Meet Sarah Britton
Intercultural Training Coordinator - Americas

What are the challenges of your job? 

The biggest challenge is managing expectations across cultures. As an interculturalist, you might think it would be easier for me but I am always learning, reading and sometimes making mistakes!

What are people's real experiences of the problems of being mobile? How do they solve those?
Being physically disconnected from a personal or professional “home base” can be disorientating. Staying connected via 24-hour-a-day communication methods reduces the feeling of isolation.

How do you think the industry has changed in recent years? Is it more complex or easier than it used to be?
Employee and family support services are more widely accepted as a standard benefit. Research is now available to prove ROI and HR departments are becoming more proactive. Our work is more complex as the standard long term relocation has been largely replaced by frequent business travelers, short-term assignments and permanent transfers. Our services have to be flexible and adapt to the needs of the market.

How might technology change thingsfor better or worse?
I am of two minds about it. Technology has changed the intercultural industry for the better in that no location is unreachable with web chats, and online learning tools add value to traditional training modules. It may have a negative impact in that virtual learning methodologies threaten the value of our face-to-face trainings. In my experience, nothing replaces the impact of an in-person, one-on-one consultative session.

What are your feelings about the future of the industry?
Mark Twain wrote “nothing so liberalizes a man and expands the kindly instincts that nature put in him as travel and contact with many kinds of people.” International assignments are an organic step in building a successful career. Living and traveling abroad is one of the best ways to become open-minded. With this openness, the more tolerant and comfortable we become with change. I feel that this can spark peaceful and respectful exchanges with people from different cultures.

More about Sarah Britton
Sarah is based in Connecticut, USA and has 12 years experience in the intercultural field. She has worked for leading relocations companies developing and coordinating intercultural services for Fortune 500 clients. She studied at Middlesex University in London and returned to the UK to work in the financial services industry. She has traveled extensively throughout Europe and North America. Her international living experience enables her to understand first-hand the challenges the employees are going through. She speaks conversational French and loves to practice her beginning Italian and Portuguese with her patient colleagues.