Building a Global Career (Part III) – Oh, The Places You’ll Go!
The last step that we have in helping you develop your global career is figuring out where you want to be for your work location. After deciding that you want to engage in a career that spans countries and developing your skillset and capabilities, it’s time to hone in on the exciting decision of where to go. Accordingly, we’ve titled this section “oh the places you’ll go!”
Consider what you want in a country and home. You may be fortunate in having options if the company you are looking to work for has an international scope. Or, you may have to do more digging yourself and choose a location first before looking into potential employers. Either way, thinking about your desire to experience a new culture — whether that be by moving there or by working with a team from there — is integral to pursuing the global career track.
An international career is increasingly becoming the norm with growingly globalized workplaces, intercultural environments (Verge). Still, the country you choose to associate your career with has implications for your short-term job prospects, your work-life balance, your skill-building, and by proxy, your future career. So, it’s important to think clearly and strategically about what you are hoping to achieve in the short term and the long term as you begin to nurture your budding global career.
What is at the top of your priorities? Fun? Career experience? Mission? (Forbes) By reflecting on what you want, the decision can be made easier. Specifically, it is helpful to understand where you stand in the tradeoff between career advancement and personal experiences. If you are leaning more towards prioritizing career advancement, it may be a good idea to be flexible in regards to location (RW). Perhaps you want to be on a small, newer team so that you can have more responsibilities and gain expertise. This may give you the opportunity to add unique value as opposed to being in a highly saturated job market with many qualified candidates. Or, you may be interested in going to a specific location to experience the lifestyle, in which case it may be in your best interest to be flexible in regards to the type of job you are doing, especially if you have a preference for a large city where the job market is saturated. (Verge)
When it comes to culture, it is also important to discern country culture with company culture. That is, an international company may not necessarily have a global culture in all of its locations (Forbes). Differences often exist across office locations, so it is important to be aware of this in the event that one office in say the US operates differently from an office in East Asia.
Bringing Us Back: Your Skillset
Another approach to identifying where you would like to go is maximizing your job-finding potential by asking what you bring to the table. What cultures and languages are you most familiar with? What unique background do you have, whether that be where you are from or where you have traveled to, and how can that contribute to a company’s mission? Like we mentioned in the previous installment of this series, localized knowledge is powerful and valuable. Your differences equate to your value–cognitive and cultural differences in addition to your skills and abilities– and these may help companies determine where you are best suited in regards to location and responsibilities. That said, it is likely that these differences that you possess if you have a work background and/or education in the US will be beneficial to you in getting a job wherever.
Going Global: Thinking Outside of the Box
As the global economy shifts, new possibilities are opening for both employers and employees. Exploring the world of international work no longer requires dropping everything, moving somewhere new, and working for someone you have never met (on top of getting involved with visas and sponsorship, passport arrangements, etc.). Therefore, even if you do not plan on relocating, having some international component to your job is more possible than ever.
At Alariss, we believe in the power of bringing international opportunities to the people we work with. We believe that talent and skills that are diverse and unique are key to both an employee’s and a company’s success. If you are looking to take the first step into the world of international work, or a powerful continuation of an already flourishing career that caters to your life, needs, and circumstances, we encourage you to work with us. We recognize the unique value of your specialties, background, and experience, and we connect you to those who do too.