Chicago Food and Drink Corporation

The staffing framework described in the case study utilizes an ethnocentric approach, which aligns the culture and beliefs of the parent company with its subsidiaries. This approach is evident as the parent company’s executive team is predominantly American, illustrated by Paul Fierman’s appointment as the director of CFO Vietnam, succeeding another American expatriate, Mike Shannon (Bodolica & Waxi, 2007). Key characteristics of this ethnocentric strategy include hiring top managers exclusively from the parent company’s nation and prioritizing its corporate culture over local cultures, thereby transferring it to subsidiary management (Johnston, 2017). Benefits of this framework include preserving the parent company’s corporate culture and providing employees with international exposure, enhancing their creativity and critical thinking.

Impact on Paul’s Role: Paul’s ability to achieve objectives under the ethnocentric framework is impacted by the need to adapt the host country’s staff to the parent company’s culture. This often results in limited creativity and opportunities for local employees, as they are typically relegated to lower-level positions, which can be demotivating. Paul must train local employees in new business practices, likely encountering resistance that could hinder overall productivity.

Alternative Staffing Framework: A short-term staffing framework might have been more suitable for Paul, given his lack of experience in international management. A three-year tenure was likely unfavorable for someone focused on gaining international market experience. Paul’s discouragement after just six months suggests that a one-year position would have been more appropriate, allowing him to gain the necessary experience without the long-term commitment.

Recommendation: The headquarters should ensure that candidates for international positions possess the requisite capacity and experience. Implementing a checklist to assess qualifications and using a short-term staffing framework could provide valuable international experience without overwhelming the candidate.

Paul’s Motivation and Suitability: Paul sought the expatriate position to gain business experience, which led to his disillusionment and demotivation after six months in a three-year role, contrary to his preferences (Bodolica & Waxi, 2007). His qualifications, compared to his predecessors, indicate he may be underqualified, lacking the skills for inter-organizational restructuring and cultural adaptation.

Expatriate Employee Considerations: Expatriate employees are typically sent by their parent company to maintain operational and cultural continuity. Key selection criteria should include management ability, adaptability to foreign cultures, stress tolerance, linguistic skills, and family circumstances (Bodolica & Waxi, 2007).

Compensation Disparities: Expatriate compensation varies by location, with Paul in Vietnam receiving less than his counterpart in Hong Kong due to cost of living differences (Bodolica & Waxi, 2007). While this benefits expatriates in more expensive locations, it can disadvantage those in less developed regions, despite having similar responsibilities.

Compensation Design: When designing expatriate compensation packages, it is crucial to ensure uniform benefits and compensation to promote contentment among all parties. Since responsibilities are comparable, compensations and benefits should reflect this parity.

References: Bodolica, V., & Waxi, M. (2007). Chicago Food and Beverage Company: The challenges of managing international assignments. Journal of the International Academy for Case Studies, 13(3), 31-42.

Johnston, K. (2017).

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