Tools to help you succeed in your Expatriation

Tools to help you succeed in your Expatriation


Here are two tools you can use to help you succeed in your expatriation:

  • The "logbook " with the essentials and good reflexes.
  • Your stakeholders’ analysis ex-pat grid will help you identify the key people in your expatriation.

1. Logbook

Create your logbook (digital or paper, personalised...) and keep it alive throughout the 3 main stages of your mobility project:

  • Beforehand, prepare yourself well
  • During, to enrich your experience
  • On your return, take a step back and make a complete assessment of your experience

1.1 Before your expatriation

Prepare your mobility as a project, by trying to answer the questions proposed in the table, and by feeling free to add lines to this table.



  • How do I imagine my expatriation (my arrival, my stay, even my return) and what are my questions?
  • What is my level of motivation on a scale of 1 to 10? If my motivation is low, how can I boost it? What will I gain from this expatriation?
  • What do I know about the host culture (how to break the ice, how to interact in the workplace with colleagues and hierarchy, what are the topics of small talk, ...)? - What are my reference points, based on the information I have today?
  • What are my internal resources (previous experience abroad, my skills for this job, etc.)?
  • Does this project remind me of a previous experience? Was it a resourceful experience, or a difficult one? How are these two experiences similar, and how are they different? - What are my areas of vigilance (e.g. different culture, requiring a relationship that is not usually mine)?
  • Who are my allies: when I have questions or a problem, who can I call on? - What can I initiate or put in place right now (e.g.: find out about points that raise questions)?

1.2 During your expatriation

Add to your logbook at your own pace and according to your needs.


In what I am experiencing, what will be useful to me when I return?

... and any thoughts you may wish to add, as you go along

1.3 When you return from your expatriation

Take stock of your learning and life lessons between the time of departure and return. - What went well?

  • What could I have done differently?
  • What is the gap between what I imagined and what actually happened? - How can I use this for my return?

2. Analysis of the Stake Holder Expatriation Grid

2.1 Create and analyse your stakeholder grid

  • List the stakeholders of your expatriation.
  • Then place them in the Influence/Benefit grid.
  • Then think about who among them could be the enablers of your success and the blockers. Think about the impact of your expatriation on their :
    • Short-term performance
    • Career
    • Salary and bonus
    • Colleagues/teams
    • Personal development
    • Private life, ...
  • For each activating or inhibiting stakeholder, what would be the extent and nature of their impact?
    • If you upset them?
    • If you satisfied them?

2.2 Position these actors on your stakeholder grid

  • 2 questions to ask yourself before positioning your stakeholders on this matrix:
    • Influence of the other stakeholder on your expatriation/means to help you succeed
    • Benefits derived from your expatriation by the other stakeholder
  • ASSOCIATES: high influence and high benefits.

Associates have the ability to block or promote you during your expatriation.  Your success will also be their success. These are the levers you need to pull and the people you have a vested interest in satisfying.

  • VIPs: high influence, low benefits.

Although they are influential, VIPs have only a moderate interest in the success of your expatriation. Make sure they will help you, but do not ask for too much so as not to bother them. Try to make them partners.

  • ALLIES: low influence, high benefits.

Allies have a vested interest in your expatriation success but do not have much to help you. Establish a good relationship with them.

  • EXTERNALS: low influence, low benefits.

Externals are not involved enough to help you. Don't spend your energy with them but always keep a friendly and open attitude.

Associates and VIPs are the enablers or inhibitors of your success.

2.3 Now define your relationship strategy with the different stakeholders.