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International relocation mobility readiness and its antecedents

Maike Andresen (Department of Social Sciences, Economics, Business Administration, University of Bamberg, Bamberg, Germany)
Jil Margenfeld (Department of Social Sciences, Business Administration and Economics, University of Bamberg, Bamberg, Germany)

Journal of Managerial Psychology

ISSN: 0268-3946

Article publication date: 13 April 2015




International relocation for work reasons implies uncertainty and stress, resulting in high expatriate failure rates. Hence, organizations should consider employee’s international relocation mobility readiness (IRMR) in selection processes. The purpose of this paper is to identify personal as well as social antecedents of IRMR.


Data were gathered by an online survey (n=273 German employees) and analyzed using SEM.


SEM results indicate that attitudinal (boundaryless mindset), biographical (previous international work experience) and social variables (the perceived social endorsement of international relocation mobility) are positively related to IRMR. The positive relationship between personality variables (uncertainty tolerance, proactive personality) and IRMR is mediated by boundaryless mindset.

Research limitations/implications

The sampling method applied limits the generalization of the results.

Practical implications

Results can be applied in personnel selection to find employees with a strong IRMR. Thus, expatriate failure rates could be reduced.


This is the first study that addressed personal as well as social antecedents of IRMR.



Andresen, M. and Margenfeld, J. (2015), "International relocation mobility readiness and its antecedents", Journal of Managerial Psychology, Vol. 30 No. 3, pp. 234-249.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2015, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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