International Assignments: U.S. Expatriates in France By: Natalia Fuscaldo, Rita Alcalde, Gladys Lliguicota & Zaneta Bell.
MHC 321 International Human Resource Management
Haub School of Business
Saint Joseph's University
April 30, 2015.
The basis of this project was to create an “executive report” as a Human Capital Consultant for an organization planning an international expansion to France. This report intends to help the expatriate’s adjustment to France easier by providing the international assignee everything there is to know about the host country. The first section of the report presents a detailed cultural profile of France with an emphasis on its demographics, customs, manners, etiquette, basic economy, and official language. The second section emphasizes Leadership and the role it has in French companies. In addition, it highlights some of the ethical conflicts that may arise for American companies in France in relation to the views on leadership practices. The third and final section of this report focuses on the process of recruiting an international assignee as well as the process of repatriation. Topics such as language training, immigration, health coverage, schooling and French social customs are discussed as well.
Cultural Profile of France
France is located in Western Europe, bordering Andorra, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, Monaco, Spain and Switzerland. It is a semipresidential republic with its capital in Paris, the nation's largest city and the main cultural and commercial center. With an estimated population of 66 million people as of July 2013, France is the 21stmost populous country in the world and the thirdmost populous in Europe (“The World Factbook”, 2014). Besides the Celtics, other ethnic groups such as Latin with Teutonic, Slavic, North African, Indochinese and Basque Minorities, comprises the French population. The official language is French and is used by 88% of the population. Most of those who speak minority languages also speak French, as the minority languages are given no legal recognition. In France, 3% of the population speaks German, 0.2% speaks Flemish, around 1.7% speaks Italian, 0.1% speaks Basque and 1.7% speaks in Arabic. Dialects such as Catalan, Occitan and Corsu are spoken as well (“France French Culture”, 2014).
As of religion standing,
France has been dominated by the influence of the Catholic
Church, yet the constitution declares it to be a "secular" country. Secularism does not reject religion but attempts to bar any single religion from gaining political control (“Culture of France”, 2015). According to the Central Intelligence Agency data, France has not officially collected data on religious affiliation since the 1872 national census due to a law prohibiting state authorities from collecting data on individuals' ethnicity or religious beliefs, which complicates assessments of France's religious composition. However, there is data that shows that religions such as Islam, Judaism, and Buddhism are practiced in France. The French economy is wellknown worldwide, as it is a member of the
Group of 7
leading industrialised countries. The G7 are the seven wealthiest major developed nations
national net wealth
, representing more than 64% of the net global wealth ($263 trillion)
according to the Credit Suisse Global Wealth Report October 2014. France is ranked as the world's
and the EU's
purchasing power parity
(“World Development Indicators”, 2015).
Some of the leading industries are steel, machinery, chemicals, automobiles, electronics, textiles, and tourism (“Culture of France”, 2015)
. With more
than 84 million foreign tourists per year, France is the most visited country in the world and ...
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