Understanding-Culture-India

Do I need an expat to run my India business?

There are very few situations where an expat can do a better job of running your India business than an Indian. Indian education is highly competitive and graduates of that education system understand doing business in India better than almost any foreigner, plus while Indian salaries are increasing fast it is still cheaper to get a very highly qualified Indian to do any role than an expat.  There are very few if any foreign sales people who can compete with an Indian Sales Manager in successfully selling to Indians and fewer still lawyers or accountants who have a better idea of how to handle Indian business processes.

Expats in India may not be effective in the day to day routine and executions but when it comes to a CEO, GM or similar function, expats in India are well regarded and taken at par with well qualified (at Business School of India) Indian Business School graduates. Largely the presence of an expat reduces or minimizes conflict situations that may arise due to organisational politics if placed via a decision making position.

Any expat you do employ needs to have very particular skills or the situation has to be very specific to consider that as an option. Some of these unusual scenarios are when the foreigner has very special knowledge skills that need to be transferred into the organisation, when the foreign company is making a very heavy investment in India and needs to protect that investment and their intellectual property, where there is no one in the head office who is comfortable in English so they need someone on site who can act as a translator for them, or when there has been a major disruption in the Indian subsidiary’s business and it is important to get a complete outsider in who will protect the mother company’s interests.

M+V is a company focused entirely on protecting the interests of our clients’ foreign shareholders. As M+V deals with foreign clientele, we do have 5 expats in the Indian team – all of whom have lived in India for a number of years and who work hand in hand with the 150 Indian teams to ensure the foreign shareholders’ perspective is never forgotten. We can help your company with their operations because we provide the bridge between ways of efficiently getting business done in India and protecting the interests of foreign shareholders.