Interview with Linda Ezzeddine, Investment and Immigration Consultant, Managing Partner at Athenian Portal
I was born in Senegal, grew up in Ivory Coast and later in Lebanon. I studied translation in Lebanon. I love exploring new places and cultures. I believe that my name shaped my modest, passionate, direct and strict personality.
My first two jobs were in Lebanon and included coordination with embassies, European universities, etc. I enjoyed that part very much.
This experience paved the way for a career in an international environment later on when I moved to Qatar. There, I worked for the Belgian embassy and then for the Dutch embassy as a Senior Consular Officer.Read more
Interview with Melissa Ng – Founder of Melewi, Product Design Strategist, Nomadic Entrepreneur
My name’s Melissa Ng, originally from Singapore. I’ve spent the last 8 years travelling and working – of which the last 6 years on my business Melewi, which is a location-independent Product UX UI design studio, working with a fully distributed team across 7 countries, and clients all around the world, including McDonald’s, Visa and Samsung.
Interview with Tobias Esche,
Travel Guide Book author on Myanmar and Thailand (forthcoming),
Travel agency owner in Myanmar and Thailand
I was born in Berlin in 1979, at a time when my grandparents were in their last year at their diplomatic posts in Yangon, Myanmar. However, after 1991 they decided to spend their retirement years in Yangon, and invited me to visit them and the country for the first time in 1996. Read more
My personal experience from countless business interactions around the world was a useful starting point – but not nearly enough. I began to compile an extensive list of facts and inputs from a wide range of sources, from Hofstede, Trompenaars and the GLOBE study to negotiation-specific works, as well as many online resources like Executive Planet or Kwintessential, to name but a few. Based on the resulting collection of data, I structured the country-specific book sections such that they followed a consistent pattern and started writing. Inevitably, far more information is available for some countries than others, but I feel I ended up with at least a fairly comprehensive overview for all of them.
The final step was crucial: working through my network, I identified about 70 people with first-hand experience from working in one of the targeted countries, as well as in at least one other country, meaning they understood the difference between inside and outside perspectives. Everyone in this group was generous enough to review a country section and provide their feedback and suggestions.
It looks like the result proves the effort worthwhile: reader feedback has been very encouraging and today, the book to my knowledge is being used at more than 35 business schools around the world. Even the U.S. Marines and Air Force use sections of the book to prepare soldiers for overseas assignments.
What are the soft skills required to make it anywhere in the world? And how do you utilise these skills in a globalised job market? Here are three simple and easy to apply success factors from my personal experience.
In addition to your technical expertise your intercultural competence is crucial to the success of an overseas experience. Train your ability to understand underlying beliefs and values. Learn about the driving forces of your colleagues’, partners’ and customers’ behaviour. Put your own culturally determined view repeatedly to the test.