What are some challenges assignees face when relocating?
Depending on the industry and their long-term career development plan, assignees may be presented with opportunities to relocate for work. This is an exciting prospect from a career-development perspective and it is an opportunity for the family to have a new experience; however with such opportunities, there are a number of challenges. Furthermore, depending on the organisation, the family may or may not be provided with support by way of intercultural coaching. Here are some factors that assignees have to consider when relocating.
The assignee who is relocating for work is often expected to ‘hit the ground running’
They may have a partner and children who are accompanying them. Partners are often tasked with getting the home up and running. Responsibilities like locating home stores and purchasing the basics to make accommodations liveable initially, then functioning in the medium-to-long term, often fall on the partner.
Depending on the country, living accommodation and local needs, some families ship personal belongings, including furniture and appliances. This in itself can involve delays and a hassle depending on the initial set up in their place of abode. Before leaving their home country, they must also sell belongings or property or get set up to rent their home, all of which places a significant burden on them.
Assignees may be leaving behind elderly parents or other relatives with special needs, where they may have been the primary caregiver. Ensuring that their relatives continue to receive the necessary support will help them to focus on the relocation.
Should the assignees have the opportunity to receive intercultural coaching, depending on the stage in their relocation, they may be distracted as they are managing multiple responsibilities at the time of the coaching sessions. They may be in the middle of meetings, tying up loose ends with the old team, while meeting new team members and becoming acquainted with the set up and responsibilities in the new location. This juggling act is a challenge in itself.
Stay tuned for part II in our intercultural coaching series which speaks about success on assignment.
Connect with us if you represent an organisation with highly mobile global leaders at all levels of the organisation. Supporting their relocation through intercultural coaching will significantly improve their chances of success in their host country. Global leaders are not all born, but are intentional about their development and we can support that process. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.