Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Highlights From Expat Expert Robin Pascoe's "Family Matters!" Survey

Hello Everyone, For those of you following our previous blogposts about Robin Pascoe's Family Matters! Survey in the expat community, here are three key highlights sent around by Robin today:

"1. The survey confirmed there is a distinct 'disconnect' in communication about relocation policy between headquarters and expat families as 64 per cent of respondents said no one - neither employee nor family members - were offered any training whatsoever. Yet, according to the latest GMAC Global Relocation Trends survey, 154 global companies reported that 84 per cent of their organizations made cross-cultural preparation available to at least one member of the family. So while it may be policy to offer training, it would appear from your responses that this news is not being communicated.

2. Marital breakdown was the highest rated factor to impact negatively on the stress of an assignment. It ranked higher than children's education, spousal resistance to move in the first place, spousal career concerns, and adjustment in general. The reasons for an assignment failure are clearly more nuanced than simply "family failure to adjust" which we hear quoted so often.

3. The number one request for inclusion in any relocation policy - well above cross-cultural training and career counseling, both of which came in almost at the bottom of the list - was "assurances of a new contact at the new destination for help settling in." Anecdotally, you informed me that in the absence of ground support in your new locales, however, other expats, through spousal organizations, schools committees, and community clubs, are stepping up to assist you."

When Robin releases her official Executive Summary of her survey findings, we will be sure to let you know. Enjoy your day!

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