To read the full version of this content please select one of the options below:

Human developmental and cultural perspectives on coaching mid-career executives in China

Advances in Global Leadership

ISBN: 978-0-85724-467-3, eISBN: 978-0-85724-468-0

ISSN: 1535-1203

Publication date: 24 January 2011


The literature on midlife transformation indicates that many Chinese executives seem to be experiencing “midlife crisis” and at a younger age than observed in Westerners. This chapter suggests that such phenomena are less chronologically aged based and more related to how individuals are perceiving, understanding, and reacting to the changing cultural and role contexts they are interacting with in rapidly modernizing China. Kegan's constructive-developmental theory of an individual's meaning-making provides a conceptual basis for better understanding of how mid-career Chinese business executives working in multinational firms are dealing with the complexity and speed of change in China. This chapter discusses Kegan's theory as well as some of the literature on midlife crisis and then applies those insights to executive coaching through a recent Chinese executive coaching case.


Woo, M.J. (2011), "Human developmental and cultural perspectives on coaching mid-career executives in China", Mobley, W.H., Li, M. and Wang, Y. (Ed.) Advances in Global Leadership (Advances in Global Leadership, Vol. 6), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 315-331.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited