Participative management is still hard to sell in the post‐Soviet world with its 50‐year tradition of ruthless authoritiarianism, fear and mistrust. The authors heard repeatedly that what Western consultancies offered was often rejected outright because there are too few antecedents in the Central and Eastern European experience for people to find Western management techniques credible or culturally congruent. Consequently, an attempt is made to cull from 100 years of management theory “conceptual stepping stones” that could lead to the accommodation of the participative methods that have proved to be success‐ and profit‐producing. Recommendations are presented for a CEE‐specific manager development model.
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