Language Skills and Efficient Knowledge Transfer: Evaluating Possibilities from the Case of Young Managers

By Sébastien Arcand, Jean-Pierre Dupuis and Stéphanie Langis.

Published by The Organization Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This research places emphasis on the language(s) used by young managers (between 25 and 35 years of age) in the workplace. Our objective is to identify language practices and possible knowledge transfer processes. As a multicultural environment where French and English coexist, compete and are used in different businesses and working environments, the Montreal Metropolitan Area provides an interesting and relevant context to conduct such a study. More than 800 individuals answered our online questionnaire, and we conducted 26 in-depth qualitative interviews. For the purposes of this presentation, we focus on the respondents’ linguistic competencies and how these competencies may or may not be part of a broader organizational knowledge transfer process. Alongside our empirical description of the sample, we propose the preliminary groundwork for a dynamic conceptual model where language skills and practices favor individual and organizational innovation.

Keywords: Bilingualism, Managers, Montreal, Knowledge Transfer, Organizations, Innovation

International Journal of Knowledge, Culture and Change Management, Volume 11, Issue 4, pp.297-316. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.579MB).

Prof. Sébastien Arcand

Associate Professor, Department of Management, HEC Montréal, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

After a Ph.D. in sociology at University of Montreal in which I studied the link between organizational structures of ethnic minority groups and political participation in Quebec during public consultations, I did a post-doctorate research at the Center for the Study of Ethnicity and Race at Columbia University while I focused on how the concept of ethnic minority is taking into account in the international human rights system. Now Associate Professor at the Department of Management at l’École des Hautes études commerciales in Montreal, my main interests are A) The role of sociology in management practices, B) Cross-cultural management, C) Organizations, identities and regional integration in the Americas. I also conducted researches on different subjects such as socio-economic integration of North African population in Montreal, on needs for literacy among workers in the textile industry in Montreal and on the evolution of ethnic relations and organizational transformations in urban contexts.

Prof. Jean-Pierre Dupuis

Professor, Department of Management, HEC Montréal, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

Pr. Dupuis owns a Ph.D. in Anthropology and is a specialist in cross-cultural management at HEC Montreal. He conducted investigation on the business culture in Quebec and on the managers from France working in Montreal. He publishes and teaches in this field. He is also interest in multicultural organizations.

Stéphanie Langis

PhD Candidate, Management, HEC Montreal, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

Stéphanie Langis first studied history of art and music. She obtained a Bachelor of music at University of Montréal before starting studies in management at HEC Montreal. She’s now pursuing a PhD where she seeks a specialty in cross-cultural management. She’s working with professor Jean-Pierre Dupuis at HEC Montreal.


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