If you’re planning a move overseas, you’re likely wondering how to set yourself up for a successful international career.
First of all, wise move. Getting a job in another country is a great way to gain experience, broaden your horizons, build your independence and strengthen your CV. But what are the best ways to set yourself up for the foreign job market?
Here are 5 top tips to help you create a successful international career and a new life abroad.
Do your research
Undecided on where to move? Firstly, do your research on the places you’re considering. And when you do, make sure to investigate both its job market and cost of living. This way, you can get a feel for how frequently opportunities come up and how much you’ll need to earn to cover basics like rent, food and transportation.
It’s also important to identify any constraints. Do you have the right passport and visa to work in said country? How easy will it be to secure the necessary paperwork? Once you’ve done this research, you’ll be able to get a better feel for where you can realistically live and work.
Think transferable skills
When it comes to job searching, broaden your horizons. If your focus is too niche, you might find it more difficult to source suitable roles. Not only that, but if you decide to move back home and there’s no equivalent job, you may need to take a backward step. Your best bet is to consider broader industries where you can acquire transferable skills.
In some job roles, you may also need to manage your expectations. Working abroad can be very different to working in your home country. Be prepared to wear many hats and get your hands dirty sometimes. (Within reason, of course.)
Gather your support network
If you’re planning on moving abroad with your partner or family, it’s really important to get their blessing and support. Moving abroad and looking for a new job will have its challenges so make sure your spouse and children (if you have them) are fully onboard. If you’re moving abroad solo, think about the best ways you can keep in touch with your family back home.
And when you do make your move, make a conscious effort to build your support network in your new location. Our blog post on 5 easy ways to build your network in a new country is full of tips on expanding your network and making the most of your new life abroad.
Make and maintain an online presence
One of the most effective tools when building your career is social media. Make sure that you have an online presence that aptly reflects your skills and expertise. Linkedin is a great platform for keeping your CV up to date, posting relative insights and searching for potential job prospects.
Social media is also a great way to contact recruiters and companies directly. Depending on the industry you’re entering, you may also find it useful to create a website to showcase your skills via an online portfolio or blog. The more of an online presence you have, the more people will sit up and notice.
Familiarise yourself with the unfamiliar
To maximise the success of your international career, always keep an open mind about different cultures, languages and customs. Embrace and respect all things new and unfamiliar. And bonus points if you can learn the local language (if you don’t know it already).
And when it is time to move abroad, immerse yourself in the local culture. Try the local foods, explore the local areas and continue to network and expand your circles. You never know what opportunities might come your way as a result.
We wish you every bit of luck as you build your international career. You’ve got this!
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