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Individual differences and expatriate assignment effectiveness: The case of U.S.-based Korean expatriates

  • Kim, Kwanghyun
  • Slocum Jr., John W.
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    The paper examines the relationships among individual differences, cross-cultural adjustment, and expatriate assignment effectiveness, using a field survey of U.S.-based Korean expatriates. Overall, the findings are consistent with the literature and support previous findings. However, a unique and interesting pattern was found, revealing that how well the expatriates adjusted to the assignment was not related to their premature return intention. This finding is attributed to Korean society's tight cultural norms, expectancy for positive career outcomes when completing such assignments, and desire to provide diverse educational opportunities and life experiences for their children and family when staying in the preferred assignment destination. Theoretical and practical implications are also discussed.

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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of World Business.

    Volume (Year): 43 (2008)
    Issue (Month): 1 (January)
    Pages: 109-126

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:worbus:v:43:y:2008:i:1:p:109-126
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    1. Varma, Arup & Toh, Soo Min & Budhwar, Pawan, 2006. "A new perspective on the female expatriate experience: The role of host country national categorization," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 41(2), pages 112-120, June.
    2. Bossard, Annette B. & Peterson, Richard B., 2005. "The repatriate experience as seen by American expatriates," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 9-28, February.
    3. Margaret A Shaffer & David A Harrison & K Matthew Gilley, 1999. "Dimensions, Determinants, and Differences in the Expatriate Adjustment Process," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 30(3), pages 557-581, September.
    4. J Stewart Black & Mark Mendenhall, 1991. "The U-Curve Adjustment Hypothesis Revisited: A Review and Theoretical Framework," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 22(2), pages 225-247, June.
    5. Earl Naumann, 1993. "Organizational Predictors of expatriate Job Satisfaction," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 24(1), pages 61-80, March.
    6. J Stewart Black, 1988. "Work Role Transitions: A Study of American Expatriate Managers in Japan," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 19(2), pages 277-294, June.
    7. Dickmann, Michael & Harris, Hilary, 2005. "Developing career capital for global careers: The role of international assignments," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 40(4), pages 399-408, November.
    8. Carr, Stuart C. & Inkson, Kerr & Thorn, Kaye, 2005. "From global careers to talent flow: Reinterpreting 'brain drain'," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 40(4), pages 386-398, November.
    9. Jeffrey P Shay & Sally A Baack, 2004. "Expatriate assignment, adjustment and effectiveness: an empirical examination of the big picture," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 35(3), pages 216-232, May.
    10. Zhang, Marina Y. & Dodgson, Mark, 2007. ""A roasted duck can still fly away": A case study of technology, nationality, culture and the rapid and early internationalization of the firm," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 42(3), pages 336-349, September.
    11. Jun, Sunkyu & Gentry, James W., 2005. "An exploratory investigation of the relative importance of cultural similarity and personal fit in the selection and performance of expatriates," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 1-8, February.
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