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Global Careers: Personal and Organizational Challenges and Rewards Dr. Margaret Shaffer University of Wisconsin Milwaukee WERC September 19, 2012.

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Presentation on theme: "Global Careers: Personal and Organizational Challenges and Rewards Dr. Margaret Shaffer University of Wisconsin Milwaukee WERC September 19, 2012."— Presentation transcript:

1 Global Careers: Personal and Organizational Challenges and Rewards Dr. Margaret Shaffer University of Wisconsin Milwaukee WERC September 19, 2012

2 Agenda Global careers in perspective Global career alternatives Personal challenges and rewards Organizational challenges and rewards Research trends and opportunities

3 Global Bingo Exercise

4 Global Bingo Goals: Assess global knowledge; create awareness of global complexities; emphasize the importance of shared knowledge in global settings; get to know each other better; have fun; and win prizes To win, have five correct answers down, across, or diagonally You may not answer the questions on your own bingo board Find someone who can answer a question, have him/her initial the box and fill in the answer without stating the answer aloud Obtain no more than two answers from any one person When you have five down, across, or diagonally, yell “Global Bingo!”

5 Global Careers Short-term Assignees Global Domestics Frequent Flyers Commuters Virtual Team Members Alternatives to Corporate Expatriates Alternatives to Corporate Expatriates Self-initiated Expatriates Flex- patriates

6 Corporate ExpatriatesSelf-Initiated Expatriates PurposeManagerial control Skill/technology transfer Management development Personal development Career development DurationUsually monthsVaries (short-term to permanent) Location1 country RelocationWith familyWith or without family AdvantagesProfessional and personal development Relationship building and integration with host country nationals Global boundary-spanner Professional and personal development Relationship building with host country nationals DisadvantagesExpensive Lack of flexibility Family adjustment problems Separation from extended family Personal risk/expense Contractual obligation Separation from extended family Comparison of Expatriates

7 Comparison of Global Travelers and Global Domestics Short-term AssigneesFlexpatriates PurposeSkill/technology transfer Problem solving Management control Management development Project-based Problem solving Skill/technical transfer DurationUsually 3-12 monthsUsually 1-2 months Location1 or few countriesMultiple countries RelocationUsually without familyWithout family AdvantagesFlexibility and simplicity Cost effectiveness Global boundary-spanner Flexibility and simplicity Cost effectiveness Global boundary-spanner Global perspective DisadvantagesSeparation stress – alcoholism, divorce, health issues Lack of integration with host country nationals Separation/travel stress – alcoholism, divorce, health issues Time zone differences Lack of social integration at home and host locations

8 Comparison of Global Travelers and Global Domestics IBTsGlobal Domestics PurposeKnowledge-transfer Negotiations Discussions Meetings or conferences Service provider Buyer of products/supplies Logistics manager DurationUsually 1-2 weeksNone or limited trips LocationMultiple countries1 or multiple countries RelocationWithout familyNone AdvantagesFlexibility and simplicity Most cost effective Global boundary-spanner Relationship maintenance with home-country colleagues Flexibility and simplicity DisadvantagesSeparation/travel stress – alcoholism, divorce, health issues Time zone differences Host country relationships limited to work colleagues Lack of global perspective Difficult to develop relationships with those in other countries

9 Assignment Policies Currently in Place Brookfield Global Relocation Services 2012

10 Future Assignment Policies under Consideration Brookfield Global Relocation Services 2012

11 INTERNATIONAL ASSIGNMENTS Who and Where

12 Profile of International Assignees 80% are male Ages – 13% are years old – 31% are years old – 34% are years old – 19% are years old – 3 % are % have not had any expatriate experience 89% were already employed by the company 60% are married 43% took children on the assignment 81% of those married had spouse/partner accompany them on assignment

13 Assignment Destinations Top LocationsEmerging New LocationsMost Challenging Locations United StatesChiliChina Brazil United KingdomAustraliaIndia SingaporeIndiaRussia GermanyRussiaUnited States AustraliaSouth AfricaUnited Kingdom

14 Global Careers and the Individual Challenges and Rewards

15 Major Personal Challenge: Cross-Cultural Adjustment Anticipatory adjustment influenced by pre-departure training, previous experience with same country or similar culture In-country adjustment affected by ability to maintain a positive outlook under high pressure, interact well with HCN’s, understand cultural values and norms, handle job responsibilities, adapt to organizational culture, self and family’s ability to handle new culture, and expat’s ability to “get along” in organization

16 Expatriate Challenges Adjustment – Work – Interaction – Cultural Spouse adjustment Global knowledge, skills and abilities Low High Months in a New Culture Mood

17 Expatriate Failure Failure – Return home early – Poor performance – Poor adjustment Cost of failure can be quite high – relocation and replacement costs, damage to reputation, lost business, etc.

18 Causes of Assignment Failure Spouse/partner dissatisfaction Other family concerns Job does not meet expectations Inability to adapt Inadequate job performance Poor candidate selection

19 Expatriate Re-Entry Reverse culture shock Readjustment problems – New position constitutes a demotion – Lack of opportunity to use skills learned abroad – Salary and benefits may decrease – Others do not relate to foreign perspective Up to 25% of returning expats leave the company within one year after returning

20 Transition Strategies To facilitate adjustment – Individual and firm agree upon the length of the tour of duty – Mutually agreeable job identified for expatriate return Keep expatriate involved in home office communication and projects while s/he is abroad Proactive strategy that provides an effective support system to allay concerns about career issues

21 Global Careers: Personal Rewards Personal growth and development Greater self-confidence Increased autonomy and responsibilities Global mindset Transferable skills Faster promotions

22 Global Careers and the Organization Challenges and Rewards

23 Purposes of Expatriate Assignments Fill a skills gap (technical or managerial) Build global relationships Craft a common corporate identity and culture Market products Transfer technology to foreign subsidiaries Provide managers with international experience Reward long-time employees Provide better on-site control of foreign operations

24 Organizational Challenges Broader and more flexible perspective More involvement in employees’ lives Greater exposure to problems and difficulties Greater exposure to external influences Greater complexities in all areas of human resource management

25 Female Expatriates Less than 20% of expatriates are female Female expatriates have lower failure rates than males – Males: 10-40% – Females: 3% More difficult to get the job than to do the job Female expatriates are seen as foreigners first and as women second Treated with the same respect as male expatriates Being a female can sometimes be an advantage

26 Dual-Career Couples More employees are refusing int’l assignments because of spouse employment – Loss of spouse’s income – Derailment of spouse’s career MNCs have to select from a diminishing pool of qualified applicants

27 Strategic Responses for Dealing with Dual-Career Challenges Intercompany networking Job-hunting assistance Intracompany employment Support for commuter marriages On-assignment career support

28 Critical Assignment Management Challenges

29 Initiatives to Improve Expatriate ROI Brookfield Global Relocation Services 2012

30 Organizational Rewards Pool of experienced international employees Accumulation of international knowledge, skills and abilities Global mindset among management team Control over subsidiaries Transfer of knowledge and competence to subsidiaries

31 The Global Employee Mobility (GEM) Project Global Work Experiences – Research and Practice

32 The Global Employee Mobility Project Aim is to improve the success of global employees Consortium of academics from around the world Research on all forms of global work experiences – Expatriates/repatriates – Short-term assignees – Flexpatriates – International Business Travelers (IBTs) – Global virtual team members – Global domestics

33 Taxonomy of Global Work Experiences High Low High Low High Global Domestics Global Virtual Team Members International Business Travelers Flexpatriates Self-Initiated Expatriates Corporate Expatriates Degree of Cognitive Mobility Degree of Boundary Integration Global Work Experiences Degree of Physical Mobility Short-term Assignees

34 Dimensions of Global Work We define global work experiences along three dimensions that identify unique requirements of the different types of global work experiences: – Physical mobility - degree to which the work role requires the global employee to travel, or relocate, internationally – Cognitive flexibility - the degree to which the global work requires role incumbents to adjust their thought patterns and scripts to effectively interact with people and adapt to situational demands across cultures. – Non-work disruption – the degree to which the work role requirements disrupt or interfere with the employee’s normal activities and routines outside of work.

35 Choices, Challenges, and Consequences of Global Work ChoicesChallengesConsequences Country and family considerations Intrinsic and extrinsic motivators Personal characteristics Safety concerns Country and family considerations Intrinsic and extrinsic motivators Personal characteristics Safety concerns Personal Organizational Selection criteria Fit between employee and global work experience type Incentive plans Preparing employees for global work Selection criteria Fit between employee and global work experience type Incentive plans Preparing employees for global work Adjustment and coping with stress Work and nonwork demands Inter-cultural relationships Identity transformation Adjustment and coping with stress Work and nonwork demands Inter-cultural relationships Identity transformation Support resources for employees and families Transition management Career management Employee engagement Support resources for employees and families Transition management Career management Employee engagement Satisfaction Well-being Career progression Development of global competencies Satisfaction Well-being Career progression Development of global competencies Performance Retention Utilization of global competencies Work goal attainment Performance Retention Utilization of global competencies Work goal attainment

36 Firm Participation Provide survey access to – Global employees – Spouses/partners and colleagues (if possible) Benefits – Summary of survey results – Suggestions for improving global work experiences


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