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A Myers-Briggs Approach to Helping Transferees Relocate

I think most people in the HR and relocation industries would agree with me when I say that cultural adaptation can make or break a relocation – especially when we are working with transferees who are moving to a situation that is the polar opposite of where they are:  countryside to city, first world to third world, English to Mandarin, democracy to theocracy, etc. So, it’s essential that we take the time to understand our transferees so that we can create a relocation program that will ease their transition. Of course, we need to know the basics about their financial situation, language versatility, family needs and home preferences, but why not go deeper than that?

I like to take a Jungian approach to learning about people. It helps me anticipate how they might react to different situations. Once we understand what makes people tick naturally, we can approach the relocation in a way they will feel most comfortable. Consider the Myers-Briggs paired categories below. Where do your transferees fit?

 

Preference Category One: Extrovert or Introvert?

Extrovert

Introvert

Social Territorial
Approachable Focused
Group-oriented Internal
Interactive Deep
Speaks first, thinks later Intense
Breadth Close circle of friends


Preference Category Two: Sensor or Intuitive?

Sensor

Intuitive (N)

Sequential Random
Realistic Future-oriented
Practical Conceptual
Specific Inspirational
Results-oriented Hates details
Lives in the present Impulsive

 

Preference Category Three: Thinker or Feeler?

Thinker

Feeler

Objective Subjective
Stubborn Wishy-washy
Rules and policy oriented Persuasive
Fair Helpful
Critical Concerned
Detached Emotional

 

Preference Category Four: Judger or Perceiver?

Judger

Perceiver

Organized and orderly Explorers
Controlled Distracted
Planner Creative
No surprises Spontaneous
Opinionated Responsive
Responds to deadlines Loves the last minute rush to meet deadlines

If you have an idea about which categories are a fit for your employee, you can start to understand not only how tMyers-Briggs and Relocationhey might react to relocating, but also which benefits will be most important and what information would be most helpful.  Take, for example, an introvert-sensing-thinking-judger (ISTJ). An ISTJ personality likes order, traditions and predictability. They can make tough decisions as long as they have enough information and they are comfortable in their routine. Often called worker bees, ISTJ’s are dependable and thorough. If you are relocating an ISTJ type, you will want to give them as much information as possible upfront – even before they decide to accept the relocation. You will also want to provide benefits that help them fall back into their routine more quickly. Instead of leaving them to explore a new city, show them where the school, grocery store, public transportation, etc. is so that they can plan ahead. Essentially, give them a means to create a controlled environment.

In a perfect world we would be able to identify each transferee with their innate preferences for more successful relocations. Click here for a sample test!

Do you take transferee personalities into account? What do you think about this method?

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