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IBUS 618 Dr.

Yang

Recruiting and Selecting Staff for International Assignments

Objectives (cont.)
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We will address the following issues:


The myth of the global manager The debate surrounding expatriate failure Factors moderating intent to stay or leave the international assignment Selection criteria for international assignments Dual-career couples Gender issues for international assignments

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The global manager


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Myth 1: There is a universal approach to management. Myth 2: People can acquire multicultural adaptability and behaviors. Myth 3: There are common characteristics shared by successful international managers. Myth 4: There are no impediments to mobility.

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Table 5-1

Current expatriate profile

Source: based on data from Global Relocation Trends: 2005 Survey Report, GMAC Global Relocation Services, National Foreign Trade Council and SHRM Global Forum, GMAC-GRS 2006, GMAC GRS.

IBUS 618 Dr. Yang

Marital Status
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53% Married male 8% Married female 7% Male with significant other 4% Female with significant other 18% Single male 10% Single female

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Expatriate Failure
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Definition: Premature return of an expatriate Under-performance during an international assignment Retention problem upon completion

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Expatriate Failure Rates


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Recall Rate Percent


US Multinationals
20 - 40% 10 - 20% < 10%

Percent of Companies
7% 69% 24% 3% 38% 59% 14% 10% 76%
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European Multinationals
11 - 15% 6 - 10% < 5%

Japanese Multinationals
11 - 19% 6 10% <5

Reason for Expatriate Failure


 US Firms
Inability of spouse to adjust Managers inability to adjust Other family problems Managers personal or emotional immaturity Inability to cope with larger overseas responsibilities

 Japanese Firms
Inability to cope with larger overseas responsibilities Difficulties with the new environment Personal or emotional problems Lack of technical competence Inability of spouse to adjust

European Multinationals: Inability of spouse to adjust.


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Reasons for Early Return


70% 60%

50%

40%

30%

20%

10%

0%

Family concerns

New position in company

Completes assignment early

Cultural adjustment challenges

Security concerns

Career concerns

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Direct Costs of Expatriate Failure


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Direct costs: Airfares Associated relocation expenses Salary and benefits Training and development Averaged $250,000 per early return

Costs vary according to: Level of position Country of destination Exchange rates Whether a failed manager is replaced by another expatriate

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Indirect Cost of Expatriate Failure


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Damaged relationships with key stakeholders in the foreign location Negative effects on local staff Poor labor relations Loss of market share Negative effects on expatriate concerned Family relationships may be affected

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Figure 5-1

International assignments: factors moderating performance

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Why consider the psychological contract?


Nature, location and duration of an international assignment may provoke intense, individual reactions to perceived violations Expatriates tend to have broad, elaborate, employment relationships with greater emphasis on relational nature Expectations and promises underpin this relationship
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The Employment Relationship


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The nature of the employment relationship Relational: broad, open-ended and long-term obligations Transactional: specific short-term monetized obligations The condition of the relationship Intact: when employee considers there has been fair treatment, reciprocal trust Violated: provoked by belief that the organization has not fulfilled its obligations
IBUS 618 Dr. Yang

Likelihood of Exit

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Figure 5-2

The phases of cultural adjustment

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The Phases of Adjustment


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The U-Curve is not normative The time period involved varies between individuals The U-Curve does not explain how and why people move through the various phases It may be more cyclical than a U-Curve Needs to consider repatriation

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Figure 5-3

Factors in expatriate selection

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Using Traits and Personality Tests to Predict Expatriate Success


Although some tests may be useful in suggesting potential problems, there may be little correlation between test scores and performance Most of the tests have been devised in the United States, thus culture-bound In some countries, there is controversy about the use of psychological tests ( different pattern of usage across countries) Use of personality traits to predict intercultural competence is complicated by the fact that personality traits are not defined and evaluated in similar ways in different cultures

IBUS 618 Dr. Yang

Mendenhall and Oddou s Model


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Self-oriented dimension Perceptual dimension Others-oriented dimension Cultural-toughness dimension

IBUS 618 Dr. Yang

Table 5-2

Harris and Brewster s selection typology

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Solutions to the Dual-career Challenge


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Alternative assignment arrangements Short-term Commuter Other (e.g. unaccompanied, business travel, virtual assignments) Family-friendly policies Inter-company networking Job-hunting assistance Intra-company employment On-assignment career support
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Table 5-3

Barriers to females taking international assignments

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Equal Employment Opportunity Issues


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Cultural Variations
and enforcement Social values Corporate practices
Law

The United States


within the country International approach
EEOA

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Chapter Summary
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This chapter has addressed key issues affecting recruitment and selection for international assignments. We have covered:
 Four myths related to the concept of a global

manager  The debate surrounding the definition and magnitude of expatriate failure.
(cont.)

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Chapter Summary (cont.)


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 Cultural adjustment and other moderating factors

affecting expatriate intent to stay and performance.  Individual and situational factors to be considered in the selection decision.  Evaluation of the common criteria used revealed the difficulty of selecting the right candidate for an international assignment and the importance of including family considerations in the selection process.
(cont.)

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Chapter Summary (cont.)


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 Dual-career couples as a barrier to staff mobility,

and the techniques that multinationals are utilizing to overcome this constraint.  Female expatriates and whether they face different issues to their male counterparts.
While our appreciation of the issues surrounding expatriate recruitment and selection has deepened in the past 20 years, much remains to be explored. The field is dominated by US research into predominantly US samples of expatriates, although there has been an upsurge in interest from European academics and practitioners.
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Chapter Summary
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Staff selection remains critical. Finding the right people to fill positions, particularly key managers whether PCN, TCN or HCN can determine international expansion. However, effective recruitment and selection are only the first step. We will explore in the next chapters that maintaining and retaining productive staff are equally important.

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Chapter Summary
 Corporate philosophy on recruiting and selection  Selection criteria and issues of concern  Local and home countries policies on foreign labor  Variations in national labor law and labor markets  Inter-company networking  Intra-company arrangement  Career assistance programs  Training and continuous adaptation

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Discussion Questions
1. What is the difference between a global manager and a global mindset? 2. Should multinationals be concerned about expatriate failure? If so, why? 3. What are the most important factors involved in the selection decision? 4. Are female expatriates different? 5. Discuss the proposition that most expatriate selection decisions are made informally, as suggested by the coffee-machine solution.
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