The Secret Diary of a Global Mobility Manager – a large spoonful of resilience needed

by Gina Tonic

Expat Academy The Secret Diary of a Global Mobility Manager - a large spoonful of resilience needed

Dear Diary,

Thursday had a particularly unusual surprise for me this week! I sailed into the office that morning with my Frappuccino not realising quite how much it would be needed to keep me cool. No sooner had I opened my emails when my eyes were drawn to an email marked ‘Urgent’.

It all started almost a month ago with a similar email also entitled ‘Urgent’. When I opened it, I was faced with an urgent potential senior hire that requires relocation.  How come these senior moves are always ‘urgent’? Obviously being high profile, the costings were prioritised over all other work and pulled together. The relocation package was subsequently drawn up ready for the offer to be presented to the candidate.

How urgent is it?

Bizarrely the ‘urgent’ case then took a couple of weeks to come through with the confirmation the candidate had accepted the role and was joining us as soon as possible. Excellent, back to priority urgent then! Immigration was key and, as always, was the most complicated of cases! French national based in the UK, married to a Canadian wife, with a step son who is British, all moving to Thailand ……….aaaarrrghhh!

We worked with the immigration supplier to work out which route was the quickest and most efficient, and assisted the new hire with collating hundreds of documents which all had to be originals or apostilled/legalised etc. A scanned copy will never suffice in these situations!

All the effort worth it?

So as the start date approached, the immigration came through, flights were booked, shipping was packed and on its way…….everything was ready for the new arrival in the host country.  Monday morning I was greeted with a lovely email confirming all was going well, he and his family had entered the host country and all was fine.

Which brings me to yesterday’s ‘Urgent’ email. Whilst sipping my Frappucino, through a new eco friendly straw (I might add), I opened this email from HR in Thailand. The initial comments just said ‘FYI’! My eyes frantically scanned down the email trail to find……’it is with regret, I am resigning from my new role.  The role is not what I had expected.  Please can you advise what the next steps are re: arranging my shipment to be returned to the UK?’. The straw fell from my mouth as my jaw dropped ……….WHAT???!!!!!

Keep calm and carry on

This is where so many Global Mobility professionals lean on their resilience. Weird, wonderful and even jaw dropping ……these scenarios often occur, sometimes in different forms, but always testing your resilience. It what makes Mobility so interesting and keeps me on my toes.  You just never know what will happen from day to day!  The key is to take a deep breath, keep calm, and carry on………Now onto trying to get the shipment turned around even though it is still in the middle of the ocean on its way to Thailand!  And breathe……

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