Home » Globally Hired: Trends and Tactics in International Executive Hiring from a South African CEO in the United Kingdom

Globally Hired: Trends and Tactics in International Executive Hiring from a South African CEO in the United Kingdom

by Tia

In an era of global connectivity, the dynamics of Executive hiring have transcended geographical boundaries, giving rise to a trend known as “Globally Hired.” As a South African living in the United Kingdom, I’ve had the privilege of witnessing and participating in this evolving paradigm, recognising the power of diversity and adaptability in shaping the future of global executive leadership.

This article delves into the trends and tactics that shape international executive hiring, providing a distinct viewpoint from the crossroads of my South African heritage and professional experiences in the United Kingdom and internationally.

Rob Mailich

One crucial piece of advice, especially important when working abroad, is to keep in mind rule number 1: you are a guest in their home. South Africans may occasionally engage in criticising others and their cultures. It’s essential to be mindful of your surroundings and show respect for the homes and cultures of others.

Global Talent Pool:

One of the most noticeable trends in international executive hiring is the creation of a vast global talent pool. Companies, now more than ever, are looking beyond borders to find the best-suited leaders for their organisations. The shift towards a remote or hybrid work environment has further accelerated this trend, allowing businesses to tap into diverse talent pools, regardless of their physical locations. This phenomenon leads to a situation where an individual’s physical presence is in one country while their intellectual capabilities are employed elsewhere. While this dynamic can enhance a business’s competitiveness in an industry, it raises questions about the sustainability of continuous employee upskilling and promotion. Is this model under threat, or could healthy competition be a positive factor?

Cultural Agility:

Navigating international Executive hiring requires a deep understanding of cultural nuances. Being a South African in the UK has underscored the importance of cultural agility – the ability to adapt and thrive in diverse cultural environments. Executives who can seamlessly transition between different cultural contexts are highly sought after, as they bring a wealth of perspectives and a nuanced approach to problem-solving.

Networking and Relationship Building:

The globalised nature of Executive hiring emphasises the significance of networking and genuine relationship-building on an international scale. As a South African professional in the UK, I’ve found that building a robust professional network is instrumental in accessing opportunities and staying abreast of industry trends. Platforms such as LinkedIn have evolved into indispensable tools for connecting with professionals globally. Additionally, artificial intelligence (AI) has emerged as a powerful resource, enabling more immediate and sophisticated communication. AI not only facilitates the swift exchange of information but also enhances the capability to identify and source top talent while predicting future trends for strategic talent pipelining.

Cross-Cultural Leadership Skills:

Executives who possess strong cross-cultural leadership skills are increasingly in demand.

This involves not only understanding different cultures but also leveraging those insights to build cohesive and high-performing teams. South Africans, known for their multicultural background, can bring a unique skill set to the table, fostering inclusivity and effective collaboration in a globalised work environment.

Strategic Positioning:

Successfully navigating the international Executive hiring landscape involves strategic positioning. Executives need to highlight their global experience, showcase adaptability, and emphasise the ability to lead in diverse settings. As a South African professional in the UK, I’ve discovered that highlighting a diverse skill set and showcasing a track record of success in various cultural contexts can truly differentiate oneself in a competitive market. This strategy injects the ‘X factor’ into your professional profile, showcasing both adaptability and a rich depth of experience aligned with the dynamic demands of the global business landscape.

Globally Hired is not just a trend; it’s a paradigm shift in the way organisations source and select their Executive leadership. As my business expands its global footprint, I’ve experienced firsthand the opportunities and challenges of international executive hiring. In essence, my journey as a South African in the United Kingdom has been a testament to the power of embracing change and leveraging diversity.

In turn, sharing our knowledge and implementing best practices throughout our teams enhance our service, empowering our clients and candidates with more sophisticated processes and ideas. This not only equips them with valuable insights but also positions them to stay ahead in an ever-evolving professional landscape, as we partner with them to be successful and resilient in the face of constantly changing dynamics.

The REDi Holbourne Group is dedicated to Contingency Recruitment, Executive Search, Talent Mapping, and International Payroll services across geographies and industries such as Technology/Digital, Finance, Banking & Risk, Human Capital, Engineering, Legal & Compliance.

www.rediholbourne.com / rob.mailich@rediholbourne.com

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