Wind of change brought by COVID-19: Exploring the response and the new normal from the perspectives of Indian flexpatriates

Santoshi Sengupta, Parth Patel, Syed Mohyuddin, Verma Prikshat, J. Irudhaya Rajesh, Vishal Rana

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Drawing from the positive organizational change theory, this paper aims to explore how Indian flexpatriates responded to the change brought by the pandemic of COVID-19 and what is the new normal according to them. Thematic analysis of 19 in-depth interviews with flexpatriates from the IT industry revealed four explicit phases of change process – reflection, communication, collaboration, and transformation. Further, the analysis brought out four tenets of the new normal. First, it is time to blend physical and virtual work; second, the “personal” touch of Indians in international assignments is irreplaceable; third, working from home amidst the entire household being housebound is the new normal; and last, international travel will resume soon with some changed protocols. This is the first qualitative study combining the issue of global talent management with Indian flexpatriates vis-à-vis the impact of COVID-19, the findings of which expand the positive organizational change theory and have important implications.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages14
JournalThunderbird International Business Review
Early online date28 May 2022
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 28 May 2022

Keywords

  • change process
  • COVID-19
  • Indian flexpatriates
  • IT industry
  • new normal
  • organizational change theory

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