The New Expatriates

Dazzling growth and a baffling workplace culture greet U.S. managers in China and India

Zhang Hai-er for TIME

Vicki Ho in an alleyway near her GE office in Shanghai on Monday September 24th, 2007

The expat gig used to be a cushy one for U.S. executives of a certain level: jet into Tokyo or Paris, tuck family into American schools and clubs, slide into fully established local office as the bigwig from headquarters. It was more of an exotic detour for loyal lifetimers than a slingshot into directorship for the young and ambitious--but who cared? Somewhere, perhaps in Tokyo or Paris, that old-timey expatriate still sips his midday martini at the foreigners' club. But in the rough-and-tumble markets of China and India, a new generation of expats--they prefer "global executives," thank you--haven't yet had a...

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