Global Competency Model by Weinberger (2014)
Weinberger (2014)

 

For the last two weeks, we had started the journey of the “Future of Work (#FoW)” and we asked you what you would need to learn if you wanted to become an entrepreneur in 2018.

If you are an entrepreneur already, you probably know that health and time are your most important assets. You would, therefore, ensure that you exercise, relax and watch your nutrition. You would also guard your time and try to be helpful at the same time. Most importantly, you would celebrate your close friends and family. They will probably stand by you when the going gets rough or when the rent doesn’t get paid.

You are not able to hide behind a manager and let her do the tough jobs only so you can complain that she never lets you do anything exciting. As an entrepreneur, you will stand in the limelight and you will need to perform all of your billable time.

What I have learned over the last few years is that “learning new stuff” took a new dimension for me when I started my business because, in the beginning, you have zero help. You can source support but it is usually too expensive so you will do a lot of tasks yourself that were done by other people in the corporate world. You might have been used to a team and never had to change the paper in the printer. You had a PA who would claim your expenses. Maybe you had a business development professional who would spice up your proposals. You certainly did not have to raise invoices and chase their payments.

On a skill level, we can always improve or learn something. We even need to practice in order not to forget.

If you feel you already know everything, you could write a book or learn Mandarin or Arabic. This will probably humble you.

Most of you have one theme in common. You are overwhelmed and stressed. One of the reasons is perfectionism, another is the need to optimize life as if it was a business. Everything is a project. The first communion of your daughter an event. The light exercise is a fitness marathon. A date with someone is a juggling exercise and creates anxiety as you will need everything to be on the “promi-dinner” standard. Your apartment is mega-clean because you only accept hotel standard nowadays. Do you also fold the toilet paper into a triangle shape sometimes and lay a piece of chocolate on your partner’s cushion?

So how do you prioritize your learning?

Give room for creation.

When you are satisfied with your work because you have a strong purpose, the amount of time you put in is not really that relevant. Your creative process needs a different space than a factory-style task. Deep satisfaction comes from creation, not from the routine and administration. I also believe you can only monetize creation. Routine can be automated and outsourced.

We created the RockMe! App to increase stress for you. No joke. You will probably feel under pressure to achieve when you work with a coach. You might experience though that your energy is more targeted. You will achieve what is important to you and you will do it with pleasure. I advise you to write your three major goals for 2018 in present tense as if you had already achieved them. If you are a visual person try to find an image or photo for every one of the three future states you would like to achieve.

As soon as you start working with the app one of our coaches will check in with you on a regular basis to see how you are getting ahead. Will this cost you anything? Yes. You will need to give us feedback. If you find our work helpful, we assume that you will recommend GPT and the RockMe! App to all your contacts and friends. That’s all.

Become the leader you want to be and work with our RockMe! App. Contact Lucie Koch to have an account set up for you.

I wish you a productive week.

Kind regards,

Angie Weinberger

P.S.: Don’t forget to check out Lucie’s post on Expat children and Identity Crisis.

Plus, read this article if you are interested in 12 tips for working virtually in a multicultural team.

Do you sometimes wonder when you update a spreadsheet, database or presentation, why you went to university in the first place? Do you sometimes feel in meetings that your potential is not fully utilized? Or when you run a team, are you the Chief Entertainer? Are you the parent cleaning up the toys after the kids, trying to stop them from fighting about the electronic devices, the projects and the recognition (i.e. bonus)?

Do you regularly try to calm the storm when one of your colleagues thinks she is right and the other one says that she started picking on him for no reason?

Companies and organizations feel like kindergarten. I don’t want to sound mean but I as a leader you spend a large part of your day solving problems, easing difficult relationships, convincing colleagues to collaborate (instead of fighting) and cleaning up sloppy data entries from unmotivated service providers who lost touch to the end client and lost pride in their work as they are working in a data factory.

We need to deconstruct career and build a new concept for a fulfilled professional life. Last week we started to discuss the future of work and how it will affect your “career”. We encouraged you to think like an entrepreneur.

Entrepreneurs have a purpose in their life. They know why they roll up a stone every day, they have an aim for their daily efforts. Here are five questions for you to reflect on:

1) What if you wanted or had to become an entrepreneur early next year?
2) What would be your three main goals for 2018?
3) Which knowledge can you build on?
4) Which critical skills do you want to develop further?
5) Which attitude would you need and which beliefs would you have to let go of?

You can write the answers down for your or record them with us now. If you would like to record your answers in our RockMe! App please email Lucie Koch so we can set you up there.

We recommend you also listen to and read this:

Podcast by Sundae Bean on Expat Life Upgrade

“The future of work is a complex thing” featuring Luke Skywalker and Buffy by the Libby.

Kai Beckmann’s take on the future of work Are we Curious Enough for the Future of Work?

Join the discussion on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter with #FoW.

 

My successful friends and I also faced job losses, health issues or international moves in the past. I observe how when we are pulled out of our program of going to work and caring for family, we open up to change.

It is more difficult to change when you are not forced to. When we feel healthy enough we don’t feel like watching our diet or go to the doctor for a check-up.

It is harder to make an effort to learn when you have a well-paid managerial job. The reason for this is not always time. Learning occurs when we stretch outside of our comfort zones but who will do that unless he or she is pushed a little?

Where are the risk-takers, who voluntarily expose themselves to learning situations that keep their brains active? Is an international career and transition into another culture one of those potential stretches you could do? Is it running your own company? Or becoming a mentor to a more junior professional in your industry?

In today’s global and digital world, do you still want to depend on an “employer” and make your self-worth dependent on a title such as “Vice President” or “Senior Manager”? Is that really driving you? Is another suit, car or holiday really going to make your life so much better?

We believe at GPT that we need to deconstruct “career”. If you think about your own professional life, you might be experiencing automation, the death of industry and uberization. Have you asked yourself if you will still have a “retirement” in 20 or 30 years?

Maybe you won’t even stop “working” because your work gives you purpose.

Being a Gen-X, I believe in ‘work hard, play hard’ and at the same time, I would like to make a contribution to the world.

Why would you use all of your energy to make a multinational more successful?

Do you really want to spend hours discussing words on a presentation or numbers in a business case?

We could go on and become the ”Walking Dead” of the workforce.

We could also say that we develop ourselves into the leaders that we really want to be.

Instead of thinking about our next promotion, more money, and the next career step, we could think about what we would like to contribute to the world. We could brainstorm a vision: why do we get up in the morning? We could think about how we can improve society, our company or even our neighborhood. We could write down what we would do every day for a better world. We could paint it, photograph it and have a vision board (on Pinterest).

Would that not make you happy and be better than “making a living”?

Kind regards,

Angie Weinberger

P.S.: related to this topic is also this short blog post from the Middle Finger Project

Guest post by Lucie Koch

Lucie Koch has joined Global People Transitions for an internship and will be sharing her internship experiences in a regular blog journal.

I have been in Zürich for a few weeks now and I am starting to adjust to swiss city life. I am amazed every day by how cosmopolitan Zürich is with all the languages heard in the tram. It’s wonderful.

In my last blog post, I wrote about how entry into professional life was one kind of culture shock. I have started to adapt to the professional and swiss cultural frame. Working for Global People Transitions is a very interesting experience, especially since I get to be involved in very diverse tasks, from administrative paperwork to exciting business development projects. I am discovering how many gearwheels must be activated and maintained for the business machine to work properly.

While I expected to have to adjust to professional culture, I wasn’t quite prepared for the general culture shock that I experienced in Switzerland. As a child who grew up in France with parents from the cantons of Zurich and Luzern, and many family ties in Switzerland, I have been exposed to Swiss culture throughout my upbringing. I spent a few holidays in Switzerland when I was younger and identified quite strongly as Swiss. But then this month, I found myself suddenly confronted with cultural and structural enigmas: What is the deal with these expensive trash bags? Why do people eat so early? I also found myself confused about how to greet new people properly – do I offer a handshake? Should I do the ‘bise’ (kiss)? – which resulted in some awkward moments of hesitation and embarrassed smiles. It turns out, I might be more French than I thought.

These experiences made me think about the topic of mixed cultural identities, especially in the case of expatriation and specifically about the children of expatriates who grow up abroad.

Indeed, when you grow up in a country as a foreigner, especially in an area of low cultural diversity as it is the case for the French countryside where I grew up, the Swiss identity makes one stand out, especially for children. You don’t understand the other kids’ popular culture references and you speak another language with your family. The scarcity of Swiss items like cervela, landjäger, and swiss chips or mayonnaise turn them into ‘precious’ objects for the expat parents and to expat children, they appear as relics of Swiss-ness that you get to share once every other month in a kind of family tradition.

In the end, as a ‘born-expat’, one gets a reflected image of the parent’s culture. Indeed, a born-expat’s understanding of the ‘culture-of-origin’ is imagined (through the information absorbed from the media, short stays in the country or from the family’s opinions and stories) and not experienced. Therefore, young expats born abroad have an incomplete picture of a culture with which they strongly identify. The resulting culture shock, when the born-expat realizes how different reality is, can be very difficult, especially since it touches the perception of one’s own identity.

Children of expatriates are a very interesting focus of study when it comes to intercultural competence and how culture affects one’s identity and life. We are quite aware of how being an expatriate family is complicated logistically, emotionally and mentally on all members during the first years of immigration or how tricky it can be to raise children in a country in which we are not completely familiar with the education system. It is however important to consider that expat-children may face identity struggles when they grow up and to actively address the issues of identity and nationality during the upbringing.

Have you experienced any issues related to identity as an expat? Do you know a good way to address the question of identity with expat children?

I hope you enjoyed the read, I’ll write again next month.

Until then, have a great day!

Lucie

Lucie Koch is intern at Global People Transitions since April 2017. She is about to graduate from an Intercultural Management Master study, which led her to study in Dijon, France, a city she was already familiar with and in unfamiliar Finland (for one semester). Previously, she studied one year at Durham university (UK) as part of a Bachelor Erasmus Mobility program. She was born in 1994 to Swiss expat couple in France. She grew up in the French countryside, around horses. She’s a self confessed introvert, fascinated by different languages, cultures, science (especially astronomy and biology) and philosophy. She also likes to spend time drawing, painting or in cinemas.

 

 

Here is an interview @Andreas Wettstein conducted with me via video last week.

Quote Andreas Wettstein “…The first person they need to sell their idea to is themselves…”.

Quote Angie Weinberger “…As an entrepreneur, most of the barriers you have are in your head…”