Friday, January 16, 2009

So, you want to be a successful expatriate and global consultant? Here’s how…

Omar Khan is a globally acknowledged leadership development innovator and success coach. He is a sought after change catalyst and a pioneer in transformational learning. Omar shares his thoughts with

Omar, what are the challenges of working in different countries, with different corporate cultures?

First, it is to understand the market, the context for business there, and the drivers of success. Some of these are universal, others are more local. More than one corporate giant has foundered in China for example, by not understanding the diverse demand and buying patterns that operate across regions.

Second, understand how to connect with the customers and consumers, and the emotional as well as rational drivers for them. What are their problems? What kinds of lives do they lead? How can you become a student of their ‘hot buttons’ (motivators) as well as ‘red flags’ (warning signals and turn-offs)?

Third, understand your own team. They will have learned to deliver in a more or less global environment based on the type of company you have. But they will need to be recognized, stimulated, coached, and incentivized in ways that are meaningful to them. The fastest way to get respect from a new team is to ask them to teach you what has been working for them, before you fix it, change it, or enhance it. Learn first, make an impact next.

Your job is ultimately to shape a corporate culture, not kow-tow to it. But you have to understand what you are seeking to change and why. Then you can pick your battles and make sure there is a compelling cause behind what you are seeking to accomplish and asking others to help you to do.

Get the full scoop here…