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INTERVIEW EDGE • volume 2 • number 2

Businesses have traditionally staffed their overseas branches with people who have technical expertise or top management skills. Now, however, it appears to take more than professional savvy to be successful abroad.

Prudential Relocation surveyed 72 personnel managers from multinational corporations to find out what traits make for overseas success. Over a third of the managers cited "cultural adaptability ­ patience, flexibility, and tolerance for others' beliefs" ­ while only 22 percent mentioned technical or managerial expertise.

In fact, the ability to integrate easily into another culture is considered so key, that many multinationals routinely hire experts to teach their employees about foreign customs. And as the economy becomes increasingly global, adaptability, patience, and tolerance – all qualities that effective interviewers already look for – will become a standard part of every job description.