Why you should embrace global talent to stay competitive in the next 10 years

In the past week, I’ve been watching a National Geographic documentary on Netflix. The one named One Strange Rock. The 10-episode series is interesting not only because it’s telling a unique story of our blue marble through a group of astronauts who have spent 1000 days in space but also giving great insights on how going to space changed the way they look at the world and life. I must give credit for kickass narration by Will Smith, big fan.

What astronauts experienced is called the overview effect. Wikipedia says “The overview effect is a cognitive shift in awareness reported by some astronauts during spaceflight, often while viewing the Earth from outer space.” Well, realistically thinking, since most of us won’t be able to look at the world from that height, we better start educating ourselves for a similar shift in awareness. I can talk a lot about how I’m fascinated after learning the main challenge of a potential Mars trip is not actually food or anything, it is our dependence on gravity… I prefer to leave it to its experts.

From a science perspective, human evolution continued for thousands of years in different continents. Humans eating different, living under different climate, talking different and as a result; thinking different. About 50.000 years ago, we started to talk to each other using a ‘language’. Then we moved on to the next chapter of our evolution, we started learning a common language and collaborate on overcoming massive challenges. Above all else, I believe this is what makes us humans.

I know vague usage of ‘we are all humans’ is not enough so I did my homework and prepared some data. At Crossover, we are using the broadly accepted CCAT test for objective first-level testing of our candidates. Since we are handling about 20 thousand job applications per week, I think our data is reliable.

From early 2018 to mid-2019 — Average CCAT Scores of Crossover Candidates

Our data is supporting a few arguments:

  1. Regardless of other evaluation criteria, there are lots of talented individuals in the ‘foreign’ markets, people with high cognitive skills. Probably much higher than your current team members
  2. Locals are providing a unique arbitrage opportunity for developed countries and even ‘hiring’ itself is a lot more expensive in developed countries
  3. You can only open your doors to the global talent if you can adopt a remote working culture in your business at a genetic level, don’t know where to start? I’m happy to help voluntarily
  4. It’s very likely that your competitors are aware of this talent pool and already started to invest. As Elon Musk quoted from Gen Shinseki: “If you dislike change, you’re going to dislike irrelevance even more.”

As a matter of fact, after doing business in many markets in the last 5 years, I know for a fact that there are no native camels in Turkey, while Rio Carnival is awesome, Brazil has a lot more to offer, Russia has beautiful women and Vodka but it also has great software engineers who are building amazing products with or without you, people of Egypt have the highest energy, while Pyramids are stunning, it has a lot more to offer. India is not only the home of the cheap workforce, but it also has tons of world-class technical and non-technical talent. Some you probably can’t afford… The list goes on…

Want to stay competitive in the next 10 years? I offer you to reconsider your current position in the following aspects of business:

  • Employment vs contract
  • Perks & benefits vs gross payment
  • We are a big happy family vs transparent & tough competition
  • Delegate and forget vs daily check-in chats & single, transparent metric definition
  • Secret payroll vs transparent payment structure
  • Getting away with what you can in the locals vs global cloud salary
  • Outsourcing vs global teams through remote working

This article first appeared on Medium.