With globalization and increasing competition, organizations are forced to expand beyond national boundaries. These international operations naturally gave birth to the need of expatriates, who goes to the foreign country with an intention of controlling the operations and to provide technical and administrative services. The expatriate job is highly demanding and sometimes very complicated due to differences between countries’ labour situation, culture, economic and legal systems. Studies undertaken in this area have shown that there is a high rate of failure among expatriates mainly because of their and their families’ inability to deal with the uncertainties associated with it(Lee,2007). Reasons for this failure can be improper selection criteria and mechanisms, lack of earlier international experience , cross cultural training ,individual factors, job related factors, home country situations, host country situations, and various other non-job related reasons( Black,et al,1991). These failures can, not only be detrimental to organization’s growth in overseas but also can create problems in the personal life of these elite executives.
This essay tries to investigate the reasons for the expatriate failure and suggest remedies to bring down the percentage of this evil or if possible completely eradicate it. Proper understanding of the term ‘expatriate failure’ will help in finding the reasons as well as to suggest remedies. According to Lee(2007), presently available literature lacks wider acceptance because ,expatriate failure is studied on the basis of only premature return and it fails to show the true picture of the extend of this vicious phenomenon. The use of this definition can be misleading and can cover up underlying issues, as it implies the completion of duration of expatriate tenure is a definite success and completely forgets the important factors like achieving performance objectives, repatriation difficulties
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