Is there a gender divide in assignment motivations?

Research from AXA - Global Healthcare suggests there are key differences in how men and women talk about international moves and their outcomes.

Male and female business travellers on smartphones
The study carried out in 2017 on behalf of the healthcare and insurance provider revealed that over half (51%) of male expats feel their time abroad has accelerated their career development, compared to 39% of women.The AXA World of Work Report also showed 43% of men felt their international assignments have enabled them to become regional experts, increasing their professional value to future and current employers.In contrast, just 36% of women believe this to be the case, with the results further suggesting women are as career-minded as their male counterparts, but more driven by wanderlust than men. 
Other news from Relocate Global:

More women motivated by adventure than men

The research, which sampled 372 globally mobile employees, indentifies women respondents are more likely to continue living abroad after completing their assignment and are more motivated by the possibility of pursuing adventure, as well as new working opportunities.Over half (56%) of women said that they would continue working in the country they are currently in, as opposed to 47% of men.

Making homes away from home

After completing their international assignments, more than a third (37%) of the women surveyed decided to permanently move to another country and make it their home. This compares to fewer than a quarter (23%) of men.The experiences of Marjolein Fruithof, a Dutch national who has lived in Dubai for five years, illustrates many of the survey's findings: “I know that my experience of being abroad has helped my career, but it’s definitely a sense of adventure and a desire to experience different cultures that is motivating me.”“Since spending a year abroad between high school and university, I’ve always enjoyed travelling.“I lived in Belgium before moving to Dubai and I’m confident that I will live in at least one more country before I think about moving somewhere a little closer to home.

Managing diversity in international assignments

Tom Wilkinson, CEO of AXA – Global Healthcare, commented: “People choose international assignments for so many different reasons; some relocate to develop their careers while others want to experience life in different parts of the world.“Whatever the reasons, I strongly encourage anyone living abroad to embrace all of the available opportunities; work and lifestyle alike. I was lucky enough to live and work abroad, and it enriched both my personal and professional development.”
Relocate Magazine Winter 2017 front cover
Read more about the future workplace and talent mobility in the Winter issue of our magazine
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