Expats Put All Their Eggs Into Our Basket to Work in Sweden

basket-of-eggs-autumn: Expats put all their eggs in our basket to work in Sweden


What Happens Next After an International Recruitment?

After a successful recruitment effort getting a talent to move to a new country it’s time to make it a true success. Everyone knows the immense cost of a failed recruitment. In addition, it is harder for a person new to a country to succeed. It is infinitely more challenging to function at a high level in a new, often unfamiliar, culture.

Making a success of a star recruitment has huge rewards. Bridging the gap between cultures to allow a person to contribute fully, quickly is an art. People are very different, finding their trigger points as well as areas of friction isn’t always done in the first month, but if you find the sweet spot the company has a lot to gain.

It’s Time to Get Things Back on Track 

An expat also needs to put a much bigger effort in a new position in a new country than at home where a great deal of what happens in a day is familiar. Many things might become mysteries in a new country:

  • Language
  • Management style
  • Interpersonal relationships
  • Corporate structure

In a way, you can compare taking an expat assignment to work in Sweden with putting all your eggs in one basket.

We’re Not in the Business of Making Omelettes

They say you can’t make an omelette without cracking a few eggs. This cannot be said when it comes to handling a new recruit who has their eggs in your basket, and vice-versa.

A person without a network is less likely to quit as job opportunities in the new location won’t present themselves until a few years have passed and they have a network of their own. Packing up and going home after a few weeks or months is not an attractive prospect for them.

Some Swedish’ global companies used to apply the view:

‘If he is good enough to get the job, he is good enough to take care of it himself’

This is a rather archaic sentiment, yet still not entirely unusual. I would argue that it is well worth the small investment in helping the star along. After all, it is not easy to find good people.  The cost and effort involved in finding someone new are bigger than for training the recruit you already have in the office. 

It Will Take Effort – But We’re Here to Help

An expat, of course, needs to get onboard with making it a success. Daily tips on how to fare in the Nordic work environment can help the person gain understanding and faster get a grasp of the culture and how to fit into it. A little help can go a long way!

The reality can come as a surprise, since during the interview period and all the meetings prior to actually showing up in the office, the discussions have been more skills and task based. Now those discussions need to come to fruition.

When You Don’t Have the Resources to Mentor

In the Nordics we don’t make our expectations very clear, we are also non-confrontational and prefer to stay mum than let someone know that we aren’t seeing the expected results. It is not uncommon to silently make excuses for the expat’s lack of performance rather than openly discussing it. The fear of confrontation is guised as being considerate to their circumstances while it really is a procrastination.

Mentoring a new star is a time-consuming and unwelcome inconvenience to anyone that has a full plate already. These soft, but ever so important issues draw few volunteers.


Let Mojo Smooth the Path for Global Mobility

Having worked with global mobility and welcoming expats for 22 years we have an online induction program that is relevant regardless of whether someone is working in the steel industry, a start-up, a law firm or in a restaurant.

You can find our 4-week Motivational Mojo coaching course here:

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