17 Best Books on Working Abroad

Best Books on Working AbroadA

re you looking to work with a team at an international location or join an international team? There are many lessons to learn before you take that leap of working abroad. The best books on working abroad will help you navigate the decision-making of choosing the right employer, understanding cultural differences, understand what you are getting into, Visa conditions for work, taxation, banking, and credit, among other things you should learn before embarking on this journey. 

Best Books on Working Abroad: THE LIST

1. The Leading Indicators
2. The Business Solution to Poverty
3. Creating a World Without Poverty
4. Working in a Multicultural World
5. Communication for International Business
6. The Handbook of International Trade and Finance
7. Making It in America
8. Beauty Imagined
9. Carry a Chicken in Your Lap
10. Built for Growth
11. Real Venture Capital
12. Working GlobeSmart
13. Voluntary Carbon Markets
14. Cracking the Emerging Markets Enigma
15. Managing Global Accounts
16. Dirty Dealing
17. Designing the Global Corporation

1. The Leading Indicators | By Zachary Karabell

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How did we come by the “leading indicators” we place such stock in? We allocate trillions of dollars and make public policy and personal decisions based upon them, but what do they really tell us?

We are bombarded every day with numbers that tell us how we are doing, whether the economy is growing or shrinking, whether the future looks bright or dim. Gross national product, the balance of trade, unemployment, inflation, and consumer confidence guide our actions, yet few of us know where these numbers come from, what they mean, or why they rule our world.

In The Leading Indicators, Zachary Karabell tells the fascinating history of these indicators. They were invented in the mid-twentieth century to address the urgent challenges of the Great Depression, World War II, and the Cold War. They were rough measures— designed to give clarity in a data-parched world that was made up of centralized, industrial nations—yet we still rely on them today.

We live in a world shaped by information technology and the borderless flow of capital and goods. When we follow a 1950s road map for a twenty-first-century world, we shouldn’t be surprised if we get lost.

What is urgently needed, Karabell makes clear, is not that we invent a new set of numbers but that we tap into the thriving data revolution, which offers unparalleled access to the information we need. Companies should not base their business plans on GDP projections; individuals should not decide whether to buy a home or get a degree based on the national unemployment rate. If you want to buy a home, look for a job, start a company, or run a business, you should find your own indicators. National housing figures don’t matter; local ones do. You can find them at the click of a button. Personal, made-to-order indicators will meet our needs today, and the revolution is well underway. We need only to join it.

2. The Business Solution to Poverty | By Paul Polak and Mal Warwick

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Right now the number of people living on $2 a day or less is more than the entire population of the world in 1950. These 2.7 billion people are not just the world’s greatest challenge—they represent an extraordinary market opportunity. By learning how to serve them ethically and effectively, businesses can earn handsome profits while helping to solve one of the world’s most intractable problems.

The key is what Paul Polak and Mal Warwick call Zero-Based Design: starting from scratch to create innovative products and services tailored for the very poor, armed with a thorough understanding of what they really want and need and driven by what they call “the ruthless pursuit of affordability.”Polak has been doing this work for years, and Warwick has extensive experience in both business and philanthropy. Together, they show how their design principles and vision can enable unapologetic capitalists to supply the very poor with clean drinking water, electricity, irrigation, housing, education, healthcare, and other necessities at a fraction of the usual cost and at profit margins attractive to investors.

Promising governmental and philanthropic efforts to end poverty have not reached scale because they lack the incentives of the market to attract massive resources. This book opens an extraordinary opportunity for nimble entrepreneurs, investors, and corporate executives that will result not only in vibrant, growing businesses but also in a better life for the world’s poorest people.

3. Creating a World Without Poverty | By Muhammad Yunus

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In the last two decades, free markets have swept the globe. But traditional capitalism has been unable to solve problems like inequality and poverty. In Muhammad Yunus’ groundbreaking sequel to Banker to the Poor, he outlines the concept of social business — business where the creative vision of the entrepreneur is applied to today’s most serious problems: feeding the poor, housing the homeless, healing the sick, and protecting the planet. Creating a World Without Poverty reveals the next phase in a hopeful economic and social revolution that is already underway.

4. Working in a Multicultural World | By Luciara Nardon

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Measurable, data-driven outcomes are not the only indicators of success in today’s multicultural and globalized workforce.  How employees interact with their colleagues and customers is also a significant factor in their career development.

Luciara Nardon draws on her extensive research and international experience to guide employees and managers through the ambiguous and uncertain waters of today’s multicultural workplace. Each intercultural encounter is unique, involving different people, contexts, dynamics, and actions which general cultural protocols are unable to address. In Working in a Multicultural World, Nardon offers a comprehensive framework for understanding intercultural interactions and developing skills for successful intercultural situations. Numerous examples and exercises, including how to reconcile personal beliefs of equality with a hierarchical workplace and how to respond to perceived aggressiveness in business negotiations, enable employees and managers to embark on reflective processes that will springboard their intercultural competence. Working in a Multicultural World is an accessibly written and valuable resource for all professionals in today’s workplace as well as students and travelers interested in intercultural relations.

5. Communication for International Business | By Bob Dignen and Ian Mcmaster

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Master the art of communication with Collins Communication for International Business. Enhance your business relationships and enjoy greater success for you and your business.

English may be the language of international business, but when talking to colleagues or business partners it can be clear that we’re not always speaking the same language.

Collins Communication for International Business will give you the strategies you need to communicate interpersonally with colleagues at home and overseas in the increasingly diverse and complex field of international business. It contains clear and practical advice from experts in the field of international business and communication to ensure you can build and enhance the relationships you need to be successful.

• Part 1 covers fundamental communication skills, enhancing your presentation skills and interactions with colleagues and business partners.

• Part 2 enables you to develop the specific skills needed for building and maintaining successful business practices and relationships, with topics such as ‘Networking’, ‘Influencing’ and ‘Managing conflict’.

• Part 3 focuses on improving your skills when working in teams and when communicating via email, telephone and video conference, with a view to delivering measurable business results.

6. The Handbook of International Trade and Finance | By Anders Grath

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Intended for use by the exporter involved in international sales, finance, shipping, and administration, or for those studying for academic or professional qualifications in international trade, The Handbook of International Trade and Finance provides a full explanation of the key finance areas of international trade – including risk management, international payments, and currency management. At the same time, it provides the essential information necessary to help reduce risks and improve cash flow.
 
This fourth edition also describes the negotiating process from the perspective of both the buyer and the seller and covers trade risks and risk assessment, structured trade finance, methods and terms of payment, currency risk management, and bonds, and standby letters of credit. It also has new examples, revised and updated regulations from the International Chamber of Commerce, and updated references and statistics.

7. Making It in America | By John Bassett and Ellis Henican

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Everyone knows you can’t build things in America anymore. Everyone, that is, except John D. Bassett III. While one corporation after another exported their manufacturing to high-volume factories in low-wage locations overseas, Bassett’s traditional wood bedroom furniture manufacturing company has not only survived but thrived, making premium products right here in America. When everyone else was rushing for the exits, Bassett bet on the talent, dedication, and uncompromising quality of American workmanship.

And he won.

In Making It in America, Bassett tells you the secrets that have made Vaughan-Bassett Furniture so successful doing what everyone said couldn’t be done. Drawing on rich life experience, including the everyday challenges running a traditional manufacturing company, Bassett constructs a 12-point plan to achieve successful leadership in any business. These steps include: Have a winning attitude, respect your employees, don’t panic, reinvest constantly, and make the best of the worst.

Bassett’s story is about how those values underpinned his personal success and how they can revitalize America itself. In the face of feckless leadership, crumbling infrastructure, and global competition, Bassett’s story is a blueprint for how America can revitalize its role as leader of the free world and how your success can be part of it.

8. Beauty Imagined | By Geoffrey Jones

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The global beauty business permeates our lives, influencing how we perceive ourselves and what it is to be beautiful. The brands and firms which have shaped this industry, such as Avon, Coty, Estee Lauder, L’Oreal, and Shiseido, have imagined beauty for us.

This book provides the first authoritative history of the global beauty industry from its emergence in the nineteenth century to the present day, exploring how today’s global giants grew. It shows how successive generations of entrepreneurs built brands that shaped perceptions of beauty, and the business organizations needed to market them. They democratized access to beauty products, once the privilege of elites, but they also defined the gender and ethnic borders of beauty, and its association with a handful of cities, notably Paris and later New York. The result was a homogenization of beauty ideals throughout the world.

Today globalization is changing the beauty industry again; its impact can be seen in a range of competing strategies. Global brands have swept into China, Russia, and India, but at the same time, these brands are having to respond to a far greater diversity of cultures and lifestyles as new markets are opened up worldwide.

In the twenty-first century, beauty is again being re-imagined anew.

9. Carry a Chicken in Your Lap | By Bruce Alan Johnson and R. William Ayres

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Recession-hit American companies are sending people overseas in record numbers in search of new business. But sadly around 75 percent of these ex-pats fail, costing an estimated two billion dollars a year. CEOs, vice presidents of international marketing and HR departments must learn how to choose and educate the right people to send overseas. Beyond helping companies to save money, this book will help save their reputations in foreign markets, strengthen their relations with partners and governments, and increase their sales and brand loyalty. Dotted with dozens of real-life stories gleaned from the authors’ globe-trotting experiences, Carry a Chicken in Your Lap answers these questions:

· Why do major corporations keep choosing the wrong people for jobs overseas?

· What should they do differently, and how should they do it?

· In addition to the billions of dollars lost, what does it cost a company in terms of the public standing in a foreign market when it sends the wrong people?

· What specific damage do the wrong people do and can any of it be corrected? (The answer may surprise you.)
Bruce Alan Johnson’s Carry a Chicken in Your Lap: Or Whatever It Takes to Globalize Your Business is the resource you need to ensure success overseas.

10. Built for Growth | By Arthur Rubinfield and Collins Hemingway

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If there’s one thing that’s consistent in today’s business world, it’s rapid change. So how do you not only stay steady but actually grow and quickly enough to stay safely ahead of your competitors? Built for Growth delivers specific solutions to create a brand and presence that generates true customer passion, as you lay a solid foundation for long-term success. Author Arthur Rubinfeld was a major driver in Starbucks’ unprecedented retail expansion from 100 stores to more than 4000– and its transformation into one of the world’s most recognized brands. Here he draws on his singular expertise to present a proven, holistic approach to conceiving, designing, and executing your business plan: creating exciting concepts, growing them to fruition in local markets, expanding rapidly, and keeping your brand fresh and relevant as it matures. His revolutionary approach to business strategy embodies strong personal values, promotes exceptional creativity, leverages scientific methodology in finance and market analysis, and brings it all together with ‘old-time’ customer service.

11. Real Venture Capital | By Richard Thompason

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A principal theme of the book is a plea for “real venture capital,” with the venture capitalist adding substantial value to companies and their founders through a wide knowledge of business, in contrast to the purely financial skills required in other sectors of the private equity field, such as leveraged buy-outs.

12. Working GlobeSmart | By Ernest Gundling

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Taking a new assignment in your company’s foreign office? Meeting a business associate from another country? Videoconferencing with a group of global co-workers? Negotiating a project deadline with the foreign software engineer across the hall? Learn how to apply a new set of cultural competencies to successfully cross-national or cultural boundaries.

Working GlobeSmart shows how global people skills add value to global business and captures the essence of what global leadership means: the ability to create a corporate culture that builds cooperation across borders and cultures, between customers and suppliers-across every organizational line.

13. Voluntary Carbon Markets | By Ricardo Bayon, Amanda Hawn, and Katherin Hamilton

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The global carbon markets are growing at a staggering rate. The growth prospects for business are enormous and the potential positive impacts for greenhouse gas emission reductions, climate policy options, renewable energy investment, development projects, and efficiency gains are increasingly apparent. A unique part of the market in greenhouse gas emissions is the rapidly growing voluntary carbon market is driven by companies, organizations, and individuals committed to efficiency, profitability, and rapid action on climate change. The second edition of this groundbreaking book draws together all the key information on international voluntary carbon markets with commentary from leading practitioners and business people. It covers all aspects of voluntary carbon markets around the world: what they are, how they work and, most critically, their business potential to help slow climate change. This new, fully revised second edition provides key updates on relevant trends, standards, suppliers, and growth in the marketplace, and is the indispensable guide for anyone seeking to understand voluntary carbon markets and capitalize on the opportunities they present for economic and environmental benefit. Second edition updates: * Contains updated data on credit prices, transaction volumes, major industry players, and other quantitative data through 2008, as well as revised analysis reflecting these shifts, Includes explanations of additional offset project type categories, providing prospective buyers and project developers with a more detailed understanding of the suite of offset projects available * Contains revised explanations and analyses by market experts of the key issues affecting the voluntary markets. Provide an updated ‘glance into the future of the voluntary carbon markets, reflecting market and policy trends that emerged through early 2008.

14. Cracking the Emerging Markets Enigma | By G. Andrew Karolyi

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Forward-thinking investors are constantly looking for the next BRIC-what foreign market is on the brink of expansive growth? Will these investments payoff, or are the potential risks too great? Investing in these emerging markets requires a careful analysis of potential risks and benefits which vary greatly from country to country and even from day today.

In Cracking the Emerging Markets Enigma, emerging markets expert Andrew Karolyi outlines a practical strategy for evaluating the opportunities and-more importantly-the risks of investing in emerging markets. Karolyi’s proposed system evaluates multiple dimensions of the potential risks faced by prospective investors. These categories of risk reflect the uneven quality or fragility of the various institutions designed to assure integrity in capital markets-political stability, corporate opacity, limits placed on foreign investors, and more. By distilling these analyses into a numerical scoring system, Karolyi has devised a way to assess with ease emerging markets by different dimensions of risk and across all dimensions together.

This novel assessment framework already has been tested in the market to great success. Researchers, students, firms, and both seasoned and novice investors are poised to gain a clear understanding of how to evaluate potential investments in emerging markets to maximize profits.

15. Managing Global Accounts | By Noel Capon

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As globalization takes hold several things happen; customers are more demanding and sophisticated, the competition gets tougher, business is more complex and fast-changing, and highly competent global account managers are in short supply. The managerial challenges of competing in a global world are more difficult in order of magnitude than competing domestically. Life is especially tough when the corporation is not centrally focused on the global customer when corporate personnel across functions and around the world do not get it. To get it means understanding at a visceral level that success or failure with global customers is maybe synonymous with success or failure of the entire enterprise. Unless all employees are focused on the firm’s relationship with its global customers, competitors that do get it will surpass them. Indeed, competitive advantage based on building global supplier-customer relationships may be longer-lasting than competitive advantage based on products or services. Companies cancel products but they less easily cancel people, especially those that have served them well. But the promise of a long-run sustainable competitive advantage can be secured only if the firm truly focuses on serving the global customer. No matter where they are located, all firm employees must understand they are competing in a global world and that success with global customers is the Holy Grail. They must throw off the shackles of ethnocentrism and nationalism acquired in their youths, and embrace the global challenge. Not only should they defend their turf against global competitors but they must do what they can to make their global customers succeed. In pursuing this goal, they may develop a global account management system that in itself becomes a competitive advantage.

16. Dirty Dealing | By Peter Lilley

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Over the US $1.5 trillion in “dirty” money is washed and moved around the world every year, much of it by organized crime syndicates grossing more than many developed economies. “Dirty Dealing” exposes the awesome scale and scope of global money laundering and its filtration into the world’s legitimate business structures. Learn about this frightening underworld and how highly sophisticated criminal organizations and terrorist groups are undermining the economies of many countries, their financial systems, governments, and businesses.

17. Designing the Global Corporation

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If there’s anything more challenging than designing a company, it’s designing a global company. Balancing strategy and structure become even more daunting when geography, foreign governments, and worldwide customers and products are thrown into the mix. And no single design works for all organizations. In this book, internationally recognized expert Jay Galbraith shows companies how to match their own strengths and strategies with proven design options. Whether they’re exporting their first product or already operating around the world, Galbraith gives companies the information they need to build flexible, global networks. And through real-world examples, he shows how successful international businesses are already navigating the global environment.

Final Thoughts on the Best Books on Working Abroad

Working abroad may be exciting, intimidating, and simply have no idea what to expect. Before embarking on this journey, take the necessary steps into educating yourself on the right course of action. 

Happy reading!

Do you see a book that you think should be on the list? Let us know your feedback here.

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Working Abroad17 Best Books on Working Abroad