Working in Another Country
Living and working in another country
A survival guide for beginners on how to live and work abroad.
Planning on moving overseas for work? Great! Working in another country is one of the best choices to make with incredible benefits for your professional career. It will help you learn or perfect another language (and we all know that nowadays languages are essential in the international job market) and provide you with enriching knowledge of different working practices and dynamics. That being said, it’s very important to know that moving to another country requires patience, effort and, above all, open-mindedness. When working in another country, you may have to face a lot of red tape and more importantly, a new culture and all that goes along with it: new ways of thinking and acting. In this short guide on working abroad, we’ll take a look at four fundamental points:
1. Language. Is. Everything.
If you want to work in a country with a different language, the ideal thing would be to get started on learning it before moving overseas. Even although it may not seem like it, language is the first obstacle a foreign person comes across when they land in their new destination. Speaking the same language, even if it’s just to get by, will help speed up you to live independently without needing anyone else’s help and understand the new world around you.
2. Working abroad is synonymous with having patience with bureaucracy
Visas, bank accounts, registration, property rental are all things that will come up. In Germany without the Anmeldung (registration) or the NIE (foreign identity number) in Spain, many of the processes just mentioned like simply opening a bank account will be a little more complicated. So, before leaving, it’ll make your life a lot easier if you get to grips with all the steps necessary to stay in your new country.
3. Work dynamics and business culture can be VERY different
In internal organizations, schedules and types of working hours, the number of holidays and unemployment benefits are all different. Each country has its own standards for the job market and each country adapts according to their own business culture. Find out more about this before choosing your country of destination and the company you’re applying to. When working abroad, it’s best not to expect too much and be as realistic as possible, then you won’t be caught off guard if you find yourself in a situation that differs a lot from what you’re used to.
4. One last piece of advice when living and working abroad
Literature and cinema will be great allies, as they portray the societies they represent. Take a look at books and films for references to understand the past and the present of the new place you’re going to live in a little better. They will also serve as topics of conversation in the future. To give a few examples of well-known artists, you could go for Haruki Murakami’s books and Kurosawa’s cinema if you want to live and work in Japan, the films of Federico Fellini if you’re moving to Italy, or soak up the literature of José Saramago if Portugal is your next destination!
We hope this short guide on living and working abroad is of some help! Now, you just have to start packing and prepare for one of the most exciting adventures of your life. Good luck!