International Journal of Business and Public Administration, Volume 16, Number 1, Spring 2019 27EXPATRIATE FAILURE IS A COMMON CHALLENGE FOR MULTINATIONAL CORPORATIONS: TURN EXPATRIATE FAILURE TO EXPATRIATE SUCCESS Semere Haile Donald White Grambling State University ABSTRACT Research indicates that international work assignments have been, and continue to be, a growing development for global economic competitiveness driven by multinational corporations (MNCs) desire. This is not important only for MNCs’ success, but also for societal developmental sustainability. As global business activities increase, expatriate assignments increase for foreign subsidiaries. However, the challenge becomes more formidable for expatriates who are unequipped to succeed. The authors of the current study will elaborate on major reasons for expatriate failure; suggest plans (expatriate selection and preparation, training and development needs, and cultural adjustment) that MNCs can use to turn expatriate failure to success. The authors will also deliver study implications, draw concluding remarks, and suggest recommendations for future research. Keywords: Expatriate failure, Reasons for expatriate failure, expatriate selection and preparation, training and development needs, and expatriate cultural adjustment INTRODUCTION As foreign investment continues to grow globally, multinational corporations(MNCs) and governments become dependent on expatriates to act as knowledge transfer agents in today’s global competitive business environment. MNCs send expatriates to a foreign country to work and live for at least one year in order to complete a specific assignment, and then typically repatriates back to the home country (Kraimer, et al., 2016). Conducting business overseas requires special trained employees and a deep understanding of the local cultures, business dynamics, legal environments and workforce diversity. However, expatriates face numerous challenges associated with adjusting to working and living in culturally diverse countries. In fact, many MNCs face high-expatriate failure rates. When MNCs expatriate objectives are not met for their assigned jobs in host countries, the rates of expatriate failure will be traditionally very high (Tahir, 2018). Research has shown how challenging it could be for expatriates to work overseas, adjust to new cultures, and understand managerial effectiveness and decision making in their roles (Matic, et. al., 2016). The jobs of expatriates continue to be a relevant subject of research in business relations between host countries and MNCs. Many expatriates return from their international assignments early or have poor job performance. The criticality and costs associated with expatriates and their reported high failure rates make training necessary (Peng, 2018).