Management in High-Risk Countries
While most Western companies’ core business is still in developed parts of the world, ongoing globalization and pressure from emerging market multinationals is urging them to extend their operations in lesser developed countries. These markets often offer attractive growth rates and profitable business opportunities, but differ significantly from typical developed markets and bear a variety of risks. In particular, multinational corporations (MNCs) sending staff abroad need to appropriately address these new challenges in order to ensure the effectiveness and success of their expatriates. As such, our research focuses on the following main topics:
Terrorism and its Influence on Expatriates
Our research provides insights on the negative outcomes terrorism can cause for managers abroad. Expatriates in high-risk countries are permanently confronted with various direct and indirect effects of terrorism and need to find a way to adequately cope with the situation in order to perform at a high level. If expatriates are overwhelmed by various stressors stemming from terrorism, it is likely that they will develop negative work attitudes and eventually perform poorly on the job.
Employing data from expatriate managers in high-risk countries, we show empirically that several terrorism-related stressors create a significant stress level for the individual. We found that conflicts within the nuclear family have the strongest impact on the expatriate, which is subject of a consecutive study. Moreover, trainings and preparation are also crucial for a successful assignment. In collaboration with companies, we are further working on the particular arrangement of such trainings, in order to implement our findings in practice.
The results of our research have been presented at several national and international conferences and are under review in international journals.
Expatriate Social Networks
While all relocations have an impact on an individual’s social network, these changes are even greater in highly endangered areas. Social contact with host country nationals is less likely, and a smaller social network in general contributes to a different psychological well-being than on assignments in less endangered areas. Our research analyzes the composition and arrangement of the social network ties that employees in high-risk areas develop.