As world focus continues to shift towards elevated levels of globalization, the topic of multinational experience is becoming increasingly important in business. Now more than ever, companies are seeking out staff members who are comfortable acting at the international scale so as to increase diversity, open up business opportunities, and keep pace with competitors. To more fully understand the value of this type of experience in the modern workplace, we sought advice from Dabie Tsai, a veteran in the world of international auditing. We’ve summarized her thoughts below to give a better picture of why multinational experience has become such an important commodity of late.
Value of Diverse Viewpoints
One of the key reasons why so many companies seek to hire employees with international experience is the diversity such practice and experience bring to their operations. This diversity is important because it allows businesses to solve problems in a variety of ways. If one tactic is failing to provide results, then an alternative viewpoint may be exactly what is necessary to find a solution. By having employees in-house that have participated in workplaces across different cultures, companies hope to capitalize on understanding the alternative ways and practices of doing business that have arisen in those countries.
This viewpoint is a familiar one to Tsai, who has long benefited from her ability to assimilate in different countries and adapt successfully to the different environs in terms of achieving one’s goals. “There are so many different cultures and people in the world,” said Tsai while speaking on the issue,“ and the more we learn about each other and learn from each other, the better it can only make all of us.” This focus on the importance of diversity doesn’t stop with her ability to work internationally and experience different cultures; she also seeks to promote diversity in many other ways. One example of this mission is her time serving as the Partner Champion for KPMG’s Asian Pacific Islanders Network and as well as its Network of Women, two professional groups that seek, in part, to further diversify the workplace.
Another aspect of multinational experience that benefits employers and employees alike is the development of openness and sensitivity gained through time spent working in different countries. This flexibility, notably the ability to adapt to a variety of environments and demands, is a natural result of exposure to cultures that are different than the one in which a person was raised. Acclimating oneself to a new workplace culture, or even simply to the different rhythms of daily life in a new country, will inevitably teach a greater ability to modify one’s own behaviors to succeed with those around them. This ability is invaluable in workplaces that are constantly changing to accommodate the evolving demands of a fast-paced global economy.
This adaptability, while a highly sought-after commodity, is also beneficial for employees themselves. By showing an ability to adapt quickly and easily to a variety of different environments, an employee with international experience opens themselves up to promotions and other opportunities that require the ability to hit the ground running. This is evidenced in Dabie Tsai’s own career, as she was able to climb the workplace ladder not only by excelling at her responsibilities but also by being qualified to work in a number of different countries.
Beyond the immediate benefit of accruing international experience, the modern employee is well-served to be cognizant of their future both in and out of their current workplace. International experience through work, travel, and social groups allows a person to develop relationships with people with whom they would never otherwise come in contact. Those relationships can come in handy when a career change is desired and one is reaching out to contacts to see what opportunities are available.
Even if an employee is good at their job, if they have failed to connect with people outside of their immediate circle, they may find it difficult to secure leads on new work in the above situation. By contrast, those who have taken measures to interact with the global community in their field may find that their opportunities for advancement with other organizations are quite extensive. This ability to transition between new and different career paths is just one more benefit of maintaining a robust level of international experience throughout one’s life.
Multinational experience is not a new concept in business and has, in fact, been valued for quite some time. It is true, however, that the advent of modern technologies that have served to better connect the world has pushed the importance of this type of experience to the forefront. Nowadays, professionals with experience working in a variety of countries, such as Tsai, find that their value in the workplace is greatly elevated when compared to those with only limited multinational experience. For those seeking increased access to opportunities, both professionally and otherwise, time spent working in different countries can be extremely advantageous.
Career Experience Overview
A longtime partner in the field of auditing and accounting, she built the bulk of her more than 23-year career at KPMG, where she served in a variety of high-profile roles. During that time, she held lead roles working with some of the firm’s largest clients in industries as far-reaching as global banking, telecommunications, manufacturing, and hospitality. She also holds extensive experience in consolidations, mergers and acquisitions, financial reporting issues, SEC filings and on internal control and corporate governance matters.
Tsai’s multinational experience stems in part from her time working at KPMG’s offices in a number of different countries. This experience includes work in the United, States, Canada, Spain, and Chile, as lead partners on large global accounts with over 250 staff members on teams across the world
More about Dabie Tsai at https://twitter.com/dabietsai