TIME FOR REPATRIATION?
Whatever are your conditions for coming back from expatriation, you cannot do it without preparation. Expats often consider the repatriation even more difficult than expatriation… While you have a good knowledge about you home country, some friends and family waiting for you (or not), the return will give you a « strange familiarity » feeling…
REVERSE CULTURE SHOCK
You have been expatriated in a foreign country for years, and although you have well prepared it, you have faced difficulties adjusting to it, changing your habits, understanding other values, behaviors, communication modes. You have spent a lot of energy to adapt yourself and to find new ways of viewing, thinking, acting, and you are different now. Chances are that you struggle to feel comfortable back home. Prepare your return as a new assignment!
Anticipate your professional return and re-establish contact with your former and newly posted colleagues. There may have been some changes in the organigramme of your company or service and it’s never a bad thing to remind HR and peers you still exist! And specifically with HR, contact them some months/weeks before coming back to prepare your new job.
FAMILY & FRIENDS
Take care of your friends, both in your adopted country and in your home country. Take time to say goodbye to all your new friends and acquaintances, and prepare to renew with your all friends and relatives. Explain you are moving again, don’t promise too much about the follow up, but make the effort to keep the link with people you like. And when you come back, try not to tell too much about you and your wonderful experience. On the contrary, be curious about your former friends and relatives at home to understand their life since you’re gone. Don’t assume that nothing has changed.
The expat packages often include a generous salary, enabling expats and their family to enjoy a lifestyle equal to that in their home country. When you come back, no more package. In fact, while returning, your spouse may not find a job right away, and you will face lower living standards for a time. Do anticipate this aspect not to add more difficulties for your first months.
Whether you are returning to your company Head office or you have to find a new job, do not skip the assessment of your new competencies, professional and soft skills. You have to clarify what you have learn during your stay and how you can use it in your new environment. Don’t make the error of feeling disconnected and may be less competitive than before leaving. You can value your experience abroad and be ambitious for the future.
Do you want to be supported to overcome your repatriation challenge?
I can help you with a specific coaching program all along the transition to make it successful!