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Critical Issues Of Female Managers And International Assignments

6277 words - 25 pages

Critical Issues of Female Managers and International AssignmentsStanley C.T. NgBA (Psy), BBA (Honours), MIB, MIRMacquarie UniversityBusiness DepartmentAbstract"Globalization" and "internationalization" are undoubtedly two of the major catchwords of the past decade. While the specific meaning of these terms varies widely, one commonality is that both of these processes require the transportation of labours across national boundaries. Without doubt, this has led to the increase in the need of expatriates from home countries in order to focus on global assignment and assist better management across nations. However, most of the expatriates to date are male, even though the number of female expatriates is increasing during these years; male managers still take a large proportion of ninety-seven percents of having the opportunity to be sent overseas (Linehan & Walsh, 1999). Accordingly, numbers of studies have taken by scholars, which attempt to unfold the underlying reason behind this trend; in particular, the variables that most multinational enterprise (MNEs) considers when making selection between male and/or female expatriates. As we should soon see, bias and stereotypes that favour male expatriate exist in almost every MNE. Although, some studies claim that many of the MNEs aware of such problem, but empirical evidences have shown us that not much effective solution have been formed. Some scholars even argue that the causes of this problem are difficult to overcome, since the "role of gender" has embedded into our social and cultural norms, which is difficult to change from the outside-in approach. As such, it is suggested that in order to reduce this tendency and to increase the pool of talents, MNEs have to form better HRM strategies, increase their awareness of the bias/stereotypes, and the social actors (i.e. government and different social groups) should also support the female candidates for international assignment.The Purpose of the PaperThe purpose of the paper is to review the common factors that MNEs considered when making the selection against and support female candidates for the international assignments and to give recommendations for the MNEs to address this issue. In order to effectively achieve this purpose, this paper is deliberately structured as follow: (1) Factors against female expatriate and the perceived risks (socio-cultural perspective, organizational perspective, and individual perspective); (2) Factors support female expatriate; (3) Problems related to low female expatriate rates; and (4) Recommendation that addresses equal employment opportunity policy: from the MNE perspective.Factors Against Female ExpatriateThere are numerous studies in the HRM literature address the factors or barriers that prohibit female candidates to take international assignments. Most of these studies emphasis on factors that stem from the individual and organizational level, which are considered as the main causes of the low female...

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