EXPLORING TOUR LEADERS’ CULTURAL COMPETENCE
Tour leaders’ cultural competence (CC) significantly influences the job performance and deserves more attention in the field of tourism research. However, few studies on the content and influence factors of tour leaders’ CC from the perspectives of tour leaders are currently available. Therefore, this study aims to explore the tour leaders’ CC for escorting tour groups. In-depth interviews with 16 tour leaders were conducted in order to explore the cultural competence in tour guiding. Through qualitative approach and content analysis, resulting in four categories of tour leaders’ CC: cultural knowledge, cultural sensitivity, cross-cultural communication and interaction, cross-cultural adaption and mediation. This research contributes to the current knowledge by expanding the understanding of cultural competence and tour group dynamics. Implications and suggestions for future research are also discussed.