Page 1 of 5 12345 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 106
  1. #1
    Member runner's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Last Online
    @
    Posts
    546

    Why expats get trapped away from home

    Why Expats Get Trapped Away from Home

    You’re a mid-level executive, working for a global company, asked to broaden your experience by working in an emerging market for a “couple of years”. A decade later, you are still working away from home, lacking the experience to acquire positions back home.

    You just fell victim to the Exiled Expat Syndrome.

    Most developed country HR functions excel at deploying and managing expatriates on an international assignment, but many are poorly skilled at repatriating the executive into a meaningful role.


    Global companies often tell their in-country employees to “think global, act local”, but the converse is a challenge. Companies have a difficult time synthesizing the returning expat’s enhanced skillset, and using it to maximum advantage. Very often companies require their returning expats to find their own position back home, or face severance.

    But let’s go back to the beginning, and review how you and your family could get trapped in an emerging market country…

    Soon after arrival, your family will start to acclimatize and take on an adventurer type mindset that opens your family to new possibilities. Here’s what you will discover:

    The job: Expats often find themselves with a materially larger job than they had back home. You probably will have more subordinates to manage, greater range of responsibilities, and a higher title within the local organization. You may feel like you have gone from the ranks of a crowded middle management career level, into senior management level responsibility. This can often be a major ego boost.

    Compensation and benefits: Perhaps you and your spouse have been living middle to upper-middle class lifestyles, both working, and slowly getting ahead. This will all change when you fully appreciate the reality of your new lifestyle. There is nothing like seeing the first salary deposit often being nearly double your reference salary back home. This is often due to salary additions for hardship, currency differentials, cost of living adjustments, and general assignment differential incentives.

    Your house or apartment will be larger and more luxurious than the home you left, and is fully paid for by the company, including utilities. In addition, a full time maid/cook is often included as well. You will get a car and driver, due to risks associated with members of your family self-driving.

    Socialization: Your children will attend private international schools, which meet the highest standards, fully funded by the company. Small class sizes and a multitude of after school activities will encourage rapid bonding. Your spouse almost certainly will be immediately invited into the local international spouses club, which sponsors a wide range of activities, including charity work, group tourism, and general friendship development.

    The Syndrome Emerges

    Companies often offer extensions, because it is less expensive and disruptive to keep a well-performing expat in their assigned position for a longer term. The alternative is a costly repatriation process, and the subsequent new expatriation process for the replacing individual.

    You’ll be living high and happy, so it will be extremely tempting to sign up for a few more years. But after an extension of an additional few years, your current employer will require you to come home; after a period of five years in a country, expat benefits are taken away as the expat is considered “localized”.

    Over the course of the four to five years working in the assigned country, you will have built in-country “networks of trust” while perhaps allowing home country relationships to go cold. You may be tempted by an offer from another multinational company to extend your expat lifestyle and all its associated benefits. Your alternative may be to take up a marginal position back home, probably acquired through open job postings.

    It will become difficult or impossible for you to go home.

    The only certain cure: avoid the Syndrome

    If you ever want to go home again, you must take vital steps before you leave your home country:

    Negotiate a guaranteed repatriation job upon completion of your initial assignment term.
    Agree as a family that no matter how attractive the expat lifestyle, you are returning after a pre-set amount of time.
    Keep your at-home networks strong, and never forget that your career depends on these contacts not forgetting you.
    Why Expats Get Trapped Away from Home | Alan Royal

    A fair enough assessment? I presume it's even worse somewhere like Thailand where the working culture, pace of corporate life, and experience set is so different, moreso for local hire expats without multinational global mobility schemes behind them, moreseo again for anyone who has become stale due to being unable to wrench him or herself away after more than a handful of years in Thailand, and even moreso for anyone without a property to return to in their homeland, and who has a wife & kids to support.

  2. #2
    Dan
    Dan is offline
    Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Last Online
    10-04-2015 @ 02:56 PM
    Posts
    129
    I've been getting two salaries for more than the last decade.

    Beats only getting one.

  3. #3
    Member runner's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Last Online
    @
    Posts
    546
    Quote Originally Posted by Kockupocket View Post
    So the problem seems to be that your job is better, your house is bigger, you get paid more and your children get to go to a better school. That's definitely something the career-minded or money-motivated would want to avoid at all costs so I'm sure any advice you can offer on how to avoid falling victim to this awful fate would be much appreciated.
    The point the article is making is that this gain is front-loaded and artificial i.e. gain now, regret later. Presumably you didn't pick up on that.

  4. #4
    Banned

    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Last Online
    14-08-2015 @ 05:39 PM
    Location
    Ex-Pat Refugee in Thailand
    Posts
    9,579
    Never had any problem transitioning. What is that? Working for Fortune 500 companies kind of opens doors rather than closes them as presumed by this author.

    The biggest adjustment is the reduced size of the paycheck. Hence, We tend to return off-shore at the earliest available assignment. The biggest barrier to working off-shore is having never worked off-shore.

    Companies don't want to take a chance on someone who hasn't got the International experience. Eliminates the groaners and moaners...Family issues seem to be the biggest failure percentages. Miss the ability to visit WalMart...

  5. #5
    Thailand Expat cyrille's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Last Online
    Today @ 12:26 PM
    Posts
    17,649
    Quote Originally Posted by Kockupocket View Post
    No. The point the article is making is that is that it's possible to avoid problems returning from an expat posting by following the author's advice:
    If you ever want to go home again, you must take vital steps before you leave your home country:
    Whether the advice is good or not, I don't know.
    Yes, presumably runner did not pick up on that, and also missed the significance of the 'if' in If you ever want to go home again, which of course would in any case be more properly be expressed as 'If you ever want to resettle in your country of birth again...'

  6. #6
    Member runner's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Last Online
    @
    Posts
    546
    ^ Presumably you missed what the bulk of the article is talking about, and the significance of the article title, which isn't "How to avoid getting trapped".

    Quote Originally Posted by cyrille
    which of course would in any case be more properly be expressed as 'If you ever want to resettle in your country of birth again...'
    More properly? The article is about expats, not emigrants.
    Last edited by runner; 17-02-2015 at 04:55 PM.

  7. #7
    Member runner's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Last Online
    @
    Posts
    546
    Thanks to the mod who moved the thread. I didn't intend to start it in the Thai language room.
    Last edited by runner; 17-02-2015 at 04:54 PM.

  8. #8
    Thailand Expat
    rickschoppers's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Last Online
    @
    Location
    Thailand
    Posts
    7,174
    International experience is a must for anyone wanting to advance their career. Todays world requires that foreign involvement becomes a necessity rather than an option. It would also be very beneficial to speak other languages, with Chinese being at the top of the list.

    Remaining in ones home country is actually what makes you stale, not vice versa.

  9. #9
    Hansum Man! panama hat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Last Online
    Today @ 04:11 PM
    Location
    Way, Way South of the border now - thank God!
    Posts
    19,479
    Just another of smeg's threads about how awful it is to be an expat . . . because he couldn't hack it.

    Why not leave it alone, smeg? You've been harping on abut this for ten years already - having a go at people who simply can't have what you couldn't get.
    Stay in your Manchester or south coats hovel and let those in other climes enjoy their lives as they see fit - stop being so envious

    Thaiophiles; Uni Thesis etc....

    Give it a rest

  10. #10
    Member runner's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Last Online
    @
    Posts
    546
    ^^ You think? Of the millions of professional lawyers, surgeons, university lecturers etc in Europe and the States, the only ones to advance their careers are those who work as expats for a while? I don't think so.

    That is a seriously flawed belief, the type that leads people into making dumb decisions about their future.

  11. #11
    Banned

    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Last Online
    14-08-2015 @ 05:39 PM
    Location
    Ex-Pat Refugee in Thailand
    Posts
    9,579
    Quote Originally Posted by runner
    I don't think so.
    Perhaps that's why you're career is Teak Door from London? Not saying its not gratifying for you but certainly not much future as a career pain in the ass on forums now is there?

    Most lawyers wouldn't know anything about working off-shore or what that entails. Same for the other professions you reference. You need an International law degree to practice in a foreign country. Not many qualify if you ever do a search for one.

    University lecturers is a career these days? Yes, there are foreign assignments for folks with university credentials at real universities...nothing stopping them.

    Pretty sappy stuff runner. Thanks for the entertainment.

  12. #12
    Thailand Expat
    rickschoppers's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Last Online
    @
    Location
    Thailand
    Posts
    7,174
    Not flawed at all Runner. You used professions that are a minority in the US. In corporate business where the big money is, international experience is a must. Even though your professions can work overseas and bolster their resume, the corporate world is becoming smaller and one needs to understand foreign cultures to survive and advance.

    I spent time overseas working in hospitals within the kingdom of Saudi Arabia and I found that experience helped me find work inside the US. Working with other nationalities is considered a good team building exercise and one I always considered when hiring pharmacists and pharmacy technicians.

    Working overseas was anything but a dumb decision as you put it, but a good troll on your part..

  13. #13
    Banned

    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Last Online
    14-08-2015 @ 05:39 PM
    Location
    Ex-Pat Refugee in Thailand
    Posts
    9,579
    Quote Originally Posted by rickschoppers
    Working with other nationalities is considered a good team building exercise
    Oh, oh...you've got me worried about you Rick, did you swallow the kool aid in that class? Say it isn't so....

  14. #14
    Pedantic bastard
    nidhogg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Last Online
    @
    Posts
    14,999
    Quote Originally Posted by runner View Post
    Thanks to the mod who moved the thread. I didn't intend to start it in the Thai language room.
    They moved it to the wrong forum.

    Smeg shite about "trapped" expats = dog house fodder.

  15. #15
    Thailand Expat
    rickschoppers's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Last Online
    @
    Location
    Thailand
    Posts
    7,174
    Dont worry Itnt, I got off the hamster wheel awhile back before my life was a total loss. Old habits die hard, I guess.

  16. #16
    Custom user Neverna's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Last Online
    @
    Location
    Behind a rhododendron bush
    Posts
    18,035
    ^^ & ^^^^^ Credit where credit's due, Runner just posted this thread as a prelude to it being sent to the Dog House where he'll be able to re-kindle the Ant-Smeg battle with pre-loaded material.

    Wash, rinse repeat.


  17. #17
    Thailand Expat
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Last Online
    @
    Posts
    60,017
    Quote Originally Posted by nidhogg View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by runner View Post
    Thanks to the mod who moved the thread. I didn't intend to start it in the Thai language room.
    They moved it to the wrong forum.

    Smeg shite about "trapped" expats = dog house fodder.
    My thoughts exactly.

    here we go again.

    Ffs broken record smeg. Troll off twat mouth.

  18. #18
    Banned

    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Last Online
    14-08-2015 @ 05:39 PM
    Location
    Ex-Pat Refugee in Thailand
    Posts
    9,579
    Quote Originally Posted by rickschoppers
    Dont worry Itnt, I got off the hamster wheel awhile back before my life was a total loss.
    That's good news...one more class on team building I was signing up for a straight jacket. Worthless shit!

  19. #19
    Thailand Expat
    rickschoppers's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Last Online
    @
    Location
    Thailand
    Posts
    7,174
    About as useful as the sexual harassment classes.

  20. #20
    Banned

    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Last Online
    14-08-2015 @ 05:39 PM
    Location
    Ex-Pat Refugee in Thailand
    Posts
    9,579


    Typical Ex-pat as portrayed by those who never have been. Is that you Runner?

  21. #21
    Banned

    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Last Online
    14-08-2015 @ 05:39 PM
    Location
    Ex-Pat Refugee in Thailand
    Posts
    9,579
    Quote Originally Posted by rickschoppers
    About as useful as the sexual harassment classes.
    Yup! Failed that one too. Amazing how many careers hit the shitter over that one.

  22. #22
    Thailand Expat Boon Mee's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Last Online
    13-09-2019 @ 04:18 PM
    Location
    Samui
    Posts
    44,721
    Quote Originally Posted by nidhogg View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by runner View Post
    Thanks to the mod who moved the thread. I didn't intend to start it in the Thai language room.
    They moved it to the wrong forum.

    Smeg shite about "trapped" expats = dog house fodder.
    Indeed...

  23. #23
    Member runner's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Last Online
    @
    Posts
    546
    Quote Originally Posted by ltnt View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by runner
    I don't think so.
    Perhaps that's why you're career is Teak Door from London? Not saying its not gratifying for you but certainly not much future as a career pain in the ass on forums now is there?

    Most lawyers wouldn't know anything about working off-shore or what that entails. Same for the other professions you reference. You need an International law degree to practice in a foreign country. Not many qualify if you ever do a search for one.

    University lecturers is a career these days? Yes, there are foreign assignments for folks with university credentials at real universities...nothing stopping them.

    Pretty sappy stuff runner. Thanks for the entertainment.
    Somewhat up yourself, aren't you? Why the need to make this personal? That is a sure sign of a lack of substance. If you find my threads a "pain in the ass", why do you have nothing better to do than read them?

    Anyway, back on topic,

    Quote Originally Posted by rickschoppers View Post
    Not flawed at all Runner. You used professions that are a minority in the US. In corporate business where the big money is, international experience is a must. Even though your professions can work overseas and bolster their resume, the corporate world is becoming smaller and one needs to understand foreign cultures to survive and advance.

    I spent time overseas working in hospitals within the kingdom of Saudi Arabia and I found that experience helped me find work inside the US. Working with other nationalities is considered a good team building exercise and one I always considered when hiring pharmacists and pharmacy technicians.

    Working overseas was anything but a dumb decision as you put it, but a good troll on your part..
    Yes, working with other nationalities is a good team building exercise. However, there are many many ways to advance careers. Working overseas is one of them, but it is not a "must" hence my opinion that anyone who thinks this is their only option to get on in their career is dumb and blinkered.

  24. #24
    Thailand Expat
    rickschoppers's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Last Online
    @
    Location
    Thailand
    Posts
    7,174
    Still disagree Runner when it come to large corporation. Of course if you are working for McDonalds, you may not need international experience even though they are all over the world.

    I guess we can agree to disagree.

  25. #25
    Member runner's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Last Online
    @
    Posts
    546
    ^ Indeed. That is what adults do. The childish here will just get bitchy and personal

Page 1 of 5 12345 LastLast

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •