Managing in Indonesia

Navigating a Diverse, Vibrant Culture

Managing in Indonesia - Navigating a Diverse, Vibrant Culture

© iStockphoto

Understand how to manage effectively in Indonesia.

Indonesia has the world's second-highest level of biodiversity. The thousands of islands that make up this unique country have pristine beaches, mysterious rain forests and colorful coral reefs.

The people of Indonesia are just as diverse as the islands they inhabit. More than 300 ethnic groups speak more than 700 languages throughout the country.

Managing a team in such a richly diverse country is interesting and challenging. In this article, we'll look at how to manage an Indonesian team, whether you are working in the country or leading a virtual team.


There are hundreds of ethnic groups in Indonesia, making this workforce incredibly diverse. The advice in this article is therefore meant as a general guide only. Keep an open mind and take a flexible approach when managing an Indonesian team, and take into account differences in personality, religious beliefs and culture.

People and Culture

Indonesia is located in Southeast Asia. The country is made up of more than 17,000 islands, but only 6,000 of these are inhabited. Two of the islands share borders with Papua New Guinea and Malaysia .

Because of the vast diversity of regions, ethnicities and languages, the Indonesian government works hard to maintain unity throughout the country. The country's motto, "Unity Through Diversity," reflects this.

The country's official language is Bahasa Indonesia. However, many people also speak Javanese and other regional languages. There are more than 700 languages spoken throughout the country. ...

Access the Full Article

This article is only available in full within the Mind Tools Club.

Learn More and Join Today

Already a Club member? Log in to finish this article.