9th Conference European Sociological Association

RS02 Dynamics and Complexity of Minority Statuses in Plural Societies

2009-09-03 15:30:00 2009-09-03 17:00:00 Thursday, 3 September 15:30 - 17:00 Immigration and Minority Statuses Building II, C3.02

Community status of labour immigrants. The process of cultural adaptation and intercultural communication of labour immigrants

Lately the number of labour immigrants coming to Russia from European countries has grown several times. It is mainly caused by the boost of economy and development of European companies on the Russian market. Large corporations and branch offices in Russia invite their colleagues from European offices in order to maintain business processes and develop the capabilities of successive leaders.
Moving to Russia is a serious step for labour immigrants, as it entails not only change of environment, but also readiness to be immersed into Russian business and culture for several years. In spite of the difficulty related to perception of local mentality and acceptance of life realities in Russia, immigrants say "yes" to offers received from Russian branch offices. They take the decision and move to Russia along with their families automatically getting the status of expatriates.
Due to various reasons most of expatriates prefer to keep their cultural identity and not join Russian community. The choice of communication network and social sphere depends on nationality and social status of the person.
Labour immigrants can get help in adapting to Russian reality in different business clubs and associations that organize informal evening events, where the expatriates can communicate with each other and Russian people and discuss business and personal matters.Informal organizations are also very active.
The background for this research was two-year active work with expatriates and dwelling in their inner community. The undertaken activities included administrating the British Business Club - a non-profit charity organization that conducts monthly informal events which unite expatriates from Europe and give them an opportunity to discuss work and personal issues. Other activities' participation in HR conferences and trainings held by international associations and chambers of commerce, cooperation with embassies in order to organize events for expatriates and representatives of Russian business.
The current research expands on pitfalls that can be found on the way of labour immigrants who move to Russia. It describes the community of expatriates and the process of adaptation to Russian culture. The research reveals basic methods of intercultural communication that are a pressing issue for expatriates.