Michael is a German senior manager of Nokia with extensive international experience. He believes that international assignments have become an important part of his DNA. When he was working in the United States, he tried to be as American as he could. Also, when he worked in the Netherlands, he tried to assimilate into the country. Now, after having worked five years in Finland as a self-initiated expatriate, he understands that he is mentally stuck and misaligned with his values. After living in and trying to adapt to many countries, he is having difficulty understanding who he really is. He decides to hire a coach, because he also wants to learn coaching skills.
This case illustrates some of the typical family relations, identity construction, and workplace challenges faced by an expatriate as well as how expatriates can enhance their career capital through coaching. The case shows how coaches can benefit from using the career capital framework as a coaching tool.