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Mentoring Practices and Power Relations in a Multicultural Work Environment: Case Study of a Qatari Organization

Fakhouri, Najwa Michel; (2019) Mentoring Practices and Power Relations in a Multicultural Work Environment: Case Study of a Qatari Organization. Doctoral thesis (Ed.D), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

This qualitative study explored the effects mentors with different sociocultural backgrounds have on indigenous Qataris’ development in the workplace designed to “Qatarize” positions held by expatriates. The hypothesis was that mentor/mentee power distances are minimized when expatriate mentors in multicultural organizations become interculturally competent so that mentor/mentee relationships enhance the latter’s professional development by minimizing power distances. An interpretive/constructionist approach was adopted, and after a pilot study and informal conversation with three Qatari females, 20 participants in an organization, including mentors, mentees, and key personnel, were interviewed. Constant Comparison Method (CCM) was used to identify and analyze patterns/themes in the data. The data revealed that, to protect their jobs, technical experts, referred to as mentor-coaches, resisted helping mentees by employing techniques that limited knowledge transfer and thereby made the learning environment at the workplace a “site of struggle” (Nakayama & Halualani, 2010, p. 2), such that the power attributable to their professional expertise conflicted with the Qatari mentees’ need to develop. Moreover, the data revealed that age differences, and stereotypes and generalizations about mentees’ work ethic, were a source of mentor/mentee tension that reduced mentees’ self-confidence. Mentors’ and mentees’ personalities also appeared to be important in enhanced mentoring outcomes. Thus, the results indicated that sociocultural factors enhance mentoring outcomes only when mentors are aware of, and sensitive to, mentees’ cultural and social norms. The results also indicated that mentors’/mentees’ shared language and cultural match do not guarantee positive mentoring outcomes. The results demonstrated that mentors’ sociocultural backgrounds do not affect mentees’ development when they have a mutually respectful and trusting relationship, and that professional development can be achieved with dialogue and communication that facilitate mentees’ independence. The study concluded with its contribution to our knowledge of mentoring Qatari men and women within QCOG and the study implications.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: Ed.D
Title: Mentoring Practices and Power Relations in a Multicultural Work Environment: Case Study of a Qatari Organization
Event: UCL (University College London)
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author 2019. Original content in this thesis is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) Licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/). Any third-party copyright material present remains the property of its respective owner(s) and is licensed under its existing terms. Access may initially be restricted at the author’s request.
Keywords: Mentoring & Coaching; Mentoring in Multicultural Environments; Power & Mentoring Relationships; Organizational Mentoring; Mentoring & Intercultural Competence; Organizational Mentoring in Qatar.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10080545
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