Managing in a Foreign Land

Managingin a Foreign Land

Managingin a Foreign Land

Entryinto the international market is considered as an opportunity for thecompany to grow, but it comes with an equal measure of challenges.This paper will provide the analysis of the key challenges thatshould be used to address challenges that a company that intends toenter the South American market might face. The paper will focus onthe process of selecting and organizing the team strategy foraddressing the challenges that the manager might face in the foreignland resolving cultural differences among the team members and atimeline for completion of the transition process.

AProcess of Selecting the Team

Thereare three factors that should be considered when selecting a team inthe foreign land. First, the manager will setup a selection panelthat will be comprised of the HR managers from home and the countryof destination because it will ensure that the people selected tojoin the team are competent enough to undertake the foreignassignments (Antoniadis, 2012). In the secondly step, the key rolesthat the team is expected to accomplish will be identified. Third,the selection panel will recruit team members who will have theskills need to accomplish the tasks identified in the second step.Candidates who have worked in teams comprising of local and foreignemployees will be given a priority since they are familiar with theanticipated working environment. This will reduce the cost and timeof training them for foreign assignments. Third, relevant culturaladaptability tools will be used to assess the cultural competence ofeach of the team members. This will ensure that each of the teammembers will be able to lead, innovate, socialize, and collaborate indifferent cultures.

AProcess of Organizing the Team

Theprocess of organizing the team should focus on ensuring that theobjectives that motivated the organization to invest in the foreignland are achieved. In the first step, the manager will reviewobjectives and plans that need to be completed in order to achievethe goals of the organization (Morgeson, DeRue &amp Karam, 2010). Inthe second step, the manage needs to determine all work activitiesthat should be accomplished in order to help the company meet theobjectives behind the foreign investment. The third step shouldinvolve the classification of tasks into manageable units. Forexample, the use of departmentalization model will result inclassification of activities in production, functional, customer, andgeography. In the fourth step, the manager will assign relevant tasksto the team. This organization process will ensure that the team isassigned responsibilities and roles that it can accomplish.

Strategyfor Addressing Potential Challenges in the New Location

Themanager is likely to face many challenges, but three of them are moresignificant. Each of the challenges will be addressed using adifferent strategy. The first challenge is culture shock, which canbe attributed to the fact that beliefs and values upheld in the U.S.and South America could be different. This challenge should beaddressed by undertaking online or offline classes on culturalcompetence (KO &amp Yang, 2011). This will make it easy for themanager to familiarize and work with a diverse workforce in theforeign land. The second challenge is communication, and it will beaddressed by undertaking a training course on effective communicationskills. For example, it will be important to understand how people inthe foreign country interpret non-verbal cues in order to avoidcommunication barriers. Third, although the challenge of lonelinessmay seem to be personal, it can affect the productivity ofexpatriates, especially those who leave their families behind. Themanager can reduce the problem of loneliness by establishing thesocial events that bring people from different countries together.This will increase the chances of meeting people from the homecountry, thus establish a support group that will help the managerfamiliarize and settle down in the new land within a short period.

AddressingCultural Differences that Could Affect Team Goals as Well asObjectives

Similarto the manager, individual team members are likely to find itdifficult to work with people from different cultural backgrounds.The manager will address the challenge by adopting an effectivediversity management strategy that will focus on enhancing thecultural competence of each of the team members. The diversitymanagement program will be based on an effective training programthat will seek to achieve three key objectives. First, the programwill help each member understand their own culture. Secondly theprogram will increase the awareness as well as the knowledge of othercultures. Third, the training program will equip the team memberswith the skills that they need in order to navigate between their ownculture that those of other members (KO &amp Yang, 2011). Thisprogram will be delivered by a staff training agency that has trainedother multicultural teams in the past.

Table1: Timeline for completion of transition process



Team selection

September 1-Septemer 9, 2016

Organizing the team

Review of objectives and plans

September 12, 2016

Determination of work activities

September 13, 2016

Classification of work activities

September 14, 2016

Assignment of activities

September 15, 2016

Addressing challenges faced after arriving

Cultural competence course

September 19-September 24, 2016

Communication competence course

September 26-October 1, 2016

Establishing social events

October 3 -October 9, 2016

Addressing cultural differences among team members

Cultural competence training program

October 10 – October 22, 2016

Itis assumed that the manager will be expected to assume foreignresponsibility on September 1, 2016.


Theconcept of expatriation has gained popularity following the increasein the penetration of companies in the foreign markets. Individualswho are assigned the foreign roles face numerous challenges,including communication, cultural shock, and socializationdifficulties. Some of the most significant strategies that may beused to address these challenges include the delivery of trainingprograms that focus on increasing the ability of the manager as wellas the team managers to word with a diverse workforce.


Antoniadis,D. (2012). Complexity and the process of selecting project teammembers. Journalfor the Advancement of Performance Information and Value,4 (1), 1-27.

KO,H. &amp Yang, M. (2011). The effects of cross-cultural training onexpatriate assignments. InterculturalCommunication Studies,20 (1), 158-174.

Morgeson,P., DeRue, D. &amp Karam, P. (2010). Leadership in teams: Afunctional approach to understanding structures and processes.Journalof Management,36 (1), 5-39.