Positions at foreign firms less attractive

Updated: 2011-10-26 07:37

By Wu Wencong and Li Jing (China Daily)

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But is it a trend?

Others doubt whether the changes can be called a trend.

A consultant from another executive search firm, who did not want to be named, disagreed with the Korn/Ferry report on that issue. He said successful examples of foreign-to-State job-hopping can be counted on the fingers of one hand, and are mainly found in technology-driven businesses.

"Senior executives heading for State-owned enterprises from foreign companies usually stay out of the core decision-making team in the new company, and are often recognized as backbones of a certain business unit, in many cases, a brand new business," he told China Daily.

"Senior executives with rich experience in foreign companies don't speak the same language as those from State-owned companies, especially in large monopoly enterprises. The cultures are just vastly different."

But he confirmed the growing popularity of State-owned companies among junior executives in foreign companies.

"Perhaps the number of those who finally make the hop successfully is not large, but the desire is certainly strong." He put it down to the unstable market that jeopardizes job security in foreign companies and to the growing need for talent at State-owned enterprises.

A former human resources staff member at a State-owned company, who also didn't want to be named, shared the consultant's assessment that most who make the change are engineers and technical personnel.

"However, though State-owned companies are trying hard to recruit managerial executives who have experience in multinational companies, the successful cases are really limited, because the corporate culture is still very different in the two types of the companies."

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