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Article
Publication date: 9 March 2015

Gabriela Glassock and Anthony Fee

The purpose of this paper is to explore the features of the decision-making processes used by self-initiated expatriates (SIEs) when considering an international…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the features of the decision-making processes used by self-initiated expatriates (SIEs) when considering an international assignment. It does this by examining expatriates’ decision processes through the lens of prominent theories of consumer decision making.

Design/methodology/approach

An abductive, exploratory research design was employed, based on in-depth qualitative case studies of nine SIEs.

Findings

In general, the expatriates in the study tended to deploy high-involvement decision-making processes. Rational decision models drawing on multiple high-quality information sources were common, especially for expatriates with career-oriented motivations and no prior experience in the target country. Three types of expatriates are distilled: “career building” (high involvement, career oriented, compensatory decision model), “risk minimizing” (high/medium involvement, non-compensatory decision model), and “emotionally driven” (low involvement, affective decision model).

Originality/value

While research into expatriates’ motivations is plentiful, this is the first study to examine the decision-making processes that define the way in which these motivations are enacted. Its originality stems from combining two previously unrelated strands of research (consumer decision making and expatriation). The resulting tentative typology of decision-making approaches provides a platform for organisations seeking to better target talent recruitment, and for researchers seeking to further examine the decision processes of SIEs.

Details

Journal of Global Mobility, vol. 3 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2049-8799

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 9 March 2015

Jan Selmer

Abstract

Details

Journal of Global Mobility, vol. 3 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2049-8799

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