Summary of Survival Kit for Overseas Living

For Americans Planning to Live and Work Abroad

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Survival Kit for Overseas Living book summary
Working abroad will give you the cultural shock of your life. Here's how to insulate yourself.


8 Overall

9 Applicability

7 Innovation

7 Style


This book, first published in 1979, is still timely and useful, though it shows a few signs of age. It’s hard to believe that any Americans in the CNN age are quite as ignorant of the world abroad as they were in the 1970s. However, diversity training and exposure to Thai and Mexican cuisine only goes so far to inoculate Americans against their own inherent cultural assumptions. Yes, this is written for people from the United States and addressed to them directly, but it would be useful to any sojourner trying to shake off hometown assumptions and adapt to life abroad. This volume treats every reader as a neophyte, a Dorothy in the Land of Oz. Author L. Robert Kohls offers a useful series of self-tests and questionnaires, psychological and anthropological frameworks, and practical guidance on routine matters. The book, which is engagingly written, with a wry and sometimes ironic touch, also contains useful appendices. believes that it merits a place in the library of anyone, particularly any American, who is taking an overseas assignment, however brief.

In this summary, you will learn

  • Much of what you need to know when you are posted overseas
  • How to understand the way your home culture affects how you adjust


Shipping Out, Are You?So you’re going to accept the chance to go abroad to live and work. Life won’t be quite what you’re used to experiencing. Other countries are different in big and small ways. To be effective in a new environment, prepare. It’s not so much that you need to understand the other country...
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About the Author

L. Robert Kohls is a trainer, educator, consultant and author. He has provided cross-cultural training to more than 70 Fortune 500 companies and is Senior Associate at the San Francisco-based management-consulting firm Global Vision Group.

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