How Do You Attract the Talent to Build an International Presence? Seven Guidelines

Interview with E.J. Dieterle, President & CEO, YES Partners, Inc.

Situation: As corporate wallets start loosening up, companies are looking at market expansion opportunities. International expansion is one alternative. In the past this was done largely by sending Expats. In more recent years there has been a trend toward hiring locally. How do you find the right talent locally?

Advice:

  • Everything starts with the basics – a good job description.
  • Finding people is easier these days with social networks like MySpace, Facebook, LinkedIn, Xing, hi5, Spoke and Plaxo. However, finding the right people remains a challenge.
  • Invest time and effort to research your target market.
    • Which country is a market or has the most likely prospective clients?
    • What is your competitive advantage there?
  • For a hiring company without an existing presence in the local market it is also a challenge to convince good local candidates that yours is the right company to join. It is important to understand the local business culture and values, and also to offer career-paths to qualified candidates.
  • Don’t assume the need for multiple offices as you start. You can start with a highly mobile person working from home who knows the local language(s), customs, and who already has contacts in your target market.
  • It is often assumed that it takes one year or more for an Expat to be efficient locally, and that hiring locally often accelerates first years’ startup-time. However, the local person has to understand and “fit” into the corporate/head office culture.
  • Working with an international executive search firm to find qualified local talent with the right fit to your business and needs can greatly improve your odds of success.

You can contact E.J. Dieterle at ejdieterle@yespartners.com

Key Words: International, Market, Expansion, Ex-Pat, Job Description, LinkedIn, Research, Competition, Brand 

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