A longitudinal study found that the psychological approach individuals take when immersed in a general multicultural environment can predict subsequent career success. Using a culturally diverse sample, we found that "multicultural engagement" — the extent to which students adapted to and learned about new cultures — during a highly international 10-month master of business administration (MBA) program predicted the number of job offers students received after the program, even when controlling for important personality/demographic variables. Furthermore, multicultural engagement predicted an increase in integrative complexity over the course of the 10-month program, and this increase in integrative complexity mediated the effect of multicultural engagement on job market success. This study demonstrates that even when individuals are exposed to the same multicultural environment, it is their psychological approach and engagement with different cultures that determines growth in integrative complexity and tangible increases in professional opportunities.

W. Maddux, E. Bivolaru, A. Hafenbrack, C. Tadmor, and Adam Galinsky
Journal Article
Publication Date
Social Psychological and Personality Science

Full Citation

Maddux, W., E. Bivolaru, A. Hafenbrack, C. Tadmor, and Adam Galinsky
. “Expanding opportunities by opening your mind: Multicultural engagement predicts job market success through longitudinal increases in integrative complexity.”
Social Psychological and Personality Science
, (July 01, 2014):