Executive On The Move

This programme is designed for CxO executives and senior experts preparing for an assignment abroad – those who want to succeed with the relocation and get the job done, while setting up a solid base for a continued career within their organisation.

They realize the whole range of serious implications and challenges they need to manage – from the relocation itself (schooling, work situation of life partner, family and social aspects), to establishing credibility with local decision makers and developing their management impact in a foreign culture. Last but not least, maintaining their influence base within the organisation’s HQ is a crucially important, and often initially overlooked, success factor.

This programme can be adapted to expatriates who are to take over the role of general manager.

Going abroad is a big leap in many respects. Among many other things, it requires executives to take their management skills and self-awareness to a higher level - so as to meet the manifold demands on their resilience. This is not just about intercultural management. It is about surmounting or eliminating the potential hurdles the expat faces – and all the more so if he/she is taking the CEO role, i.e. being the bridge to headquarters and shareholder. Challenges include:

  • The need to communicate direction to a diverse set of individuals with widely differing communication styles in a new cultural environment
  • An unmatched level of scrutiny by peers and headquarters
  • Interpretation of every comment or nonverbal cue by co-workers, generating frequent misunderstandings
  • High pressure around reporting dates, especially before feeling confident in the new team’s competence
  • Exposure to media and high-level networking in an unfamiliar cultural environment
  • Wariness of emotional decisions which can backfire and are expensive to fix
  • The need to develop high-level strategies and influencing skills without corrupting one’s personal values
  • The need to successfully establish long-distance reporting relationships – plus the need to keep up key relationships with the established network of old allies, mentors, or sponsors. 

The challenges (like those above) of evolving successfully can result in a staggering amount of pressure. From my experience, I can confidently state that evolving under pressure by oneself is not very likely. On the contrary, when in a new environment or under pressure, people become more conservative and prone to conserve even ineffective behaviours, or slide back into outgrown self-sabotaging patterns.

Bottom line: People who need to raise their game should look for ways to turn pressure into something that fuels positive change: my high-level input allows them to develop new, creative ways of thinking about their issues.

Sample Testimonials