As a result of globalization and increased opportunities due to the need for specific skill sets overseas, more and more people are looking to work abroad.
Why Do You Want to Work Abroad?
But before deciding to embark on an international job search, it’s important to understand why you are interested in working abroad so that you can create a path and choose targets that will move you in the right direction.
Questions to ask yourself:
- Do I want international experience to advance my career, experience a different lifestyle, or both?
- Am I interested in a short-term or single overseas assignment to help differentiate myself in an overcrowded marketplace, or do I want to work abroad for an extended period of time?
- Is my goal to acquire overseas experience to position myself for a senior or C-suite position at a global company, or simply to develop new skills sets?
- Do you feel the need to work abroad because you are struggling to find a job in your home country, or are you interested in making a greater impact in the world?
- experience a different lifestyle, then you’ll want to target the countries that are going to help give you that desired lifestyle.
- advance your career, then you’d likely target countries where there is activity and growth in your target industry or companies.
- secure a single overseas assignment, your first step would be to target companies who regularly send their employees abroad for development or for business objectives.
- work abroad for an extended period of time, you’d want to consider companies interested in expanding globally who need specific skill sets to grow their presence more permanently in new markets.
- develop new skills, you’ll want to target roles that would allow you to develop those skills (and certainly specific global competencies that will be of great value to your future international career).
- position yourself for senior or C-suite roles, you’d want to make sure that you target jobs that would put you on that track.
- make a greater impact in the world, you’d want to consider companies who have been making, or have expressed interest in making, that type of desired impact.
By choosing the right targets you can set yourself up for success and insure that your goals for your international job search and working abroad are achieved.
Culture Can Have a Big Impact on Your Success
But regardless of what your target roles and companies are, choosing countries or cultures in which you will most likely be able to perform in well will be critical to your short-term and long-term success. How you are able to operate in new cultures can have a great impact on your performance. And not being able to deliver results in your current job can have an impact on your ability to land future jobs.
For example, if you are very independent with a direct and assertive leadership style, operating in high-context cultures where communication is more indirect and relationships are important in getting things done, such as those in many African and Asian countries, will require you to adapt to different ‘rules of engagement’ if you want to succeed.
In sum, choosing the right target countries, roles and organizations is critical to a successful international job search and can set yourself up for short-term and long-term professional success.
EXPAT AND INTERNATIONAL CAREER SUCCESS TIP: Before beginning your international job search, it's important to consider your motivations so that you can make the right choices to set yourself up for success. You can begin by reviewing and answering the questions above, as well as read up on the cultures you are considering moving to so you understand how your behaviour and leadership style could impact your performance at work.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Megan Fitzgerald and Career by Choice can help you...explore international career options and find work abroad ~ understand your Personal Brand DNA® and how you perform at your best ~ clarify your personal brand so you can stand out and be sought after for top jobs overseas ~ develop marketing tools and strategies to communicate your unique expertise in a compelling way ~ strengthen your online reputation to attract employers and secure international jobs ~ become highly visible, recognized and well compensated for the value you create ~ overcome challenges and grow as a leader on international assignments ~ leverage social media to build your global online network ~ develop a global mindset ~ find an international career coach and experienced guide ~ conduct an international job search ~ optimize your choices and discover success abroad on your terms by being your best self. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~