Thinking of expanding your horizons with jobs overseas?

Whether you’re thinking of taking your career overseas, or an expat thinking of bringing it back to Australia or New Zealand, Peter Blair thinks it’s a great idea.

Peter BlairSince recently returning to Australia from Singapore, I have been asked how I have found the Asian job market and what’s different to Australia and New Zealand. People want to discuss and assess how many roles are available and what’s really going on the Asian and Australasian job markets.

The movement of Australians and Kiwis to global roles are so easy to track on LinkedIn these days, as we look proudly on the profile photos of our fellow countrymen and countrywomen their happiness through success, wealth and opportunities in amazing companies, countries and industries.

Many have found love, grown their families and joined friendly expatriate community of interesting and exciting people. As an ‘expat’ you really do collaborate with work colleagues, other expatriates.

Families bond on education, health and food, all between the travel. It’s always an easy conversation starter. ‘How was France? Wasn’t Denver cold! Russia was amazing! How was the quick trip home?’

Many Australians and Kiwis then go to Asia as part of the global journey. The warmth, friendliness and the quick flight home reminds them of their place of birth. It drives a burning desire to return home for many that I met, they are so close suddenly and yet so far for a great career step.

So with all the wonders of the world and balanced, rewarding careers, why the desire to go home?With such a wonderful experience outside home, why come back? Surely like many of the world’s expat workers the diaspora becomes your new community? Serbs in Chicago, Irish in New York, South Africans in Dubai are just a few examples.

Where are the Aussies and Kiwis? They know it’s time to come home to the greatest place on earth for all the reasons we know: warmth, education, friends, family. Like the best holiday you ever had and want again.

Australia is changing and becoming more exciting in the world of retail, media, hospitality and consumer goods. There are more opportunities but they can be harder to find as many new retailers open and others close. Large consumer, media and hospitality companies restructure constantly, and smaller ones find ways to open new channels. Then there’s the mystique of private equity, or those hard to access board positions to really get your career moving.

 

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Here’s my tips, the quick points that I give when asked ‘so what are the secrets to going away and getting back?’

Your working life is like a dartboard:

  • The outer ring is everyday life – things that happen when you are working – a friend suggests opening a pizza place in Indonesia but perhaps you don’t do it this time. Things happen but you still stay in the same company. You might change roles, but you stay.
  • The inner ring is when you get a little excited about change so you might see a recruiter, look at job boards, or find your long lost first degree connections and get really into ‘finding your best role ever.’ Perhaps you do change companies, perhaps you don’t, but you now know more about yourself and who to ask.
  • The bull’s-eye is what gets you there and back. Stay close to the companies that want to hire you, and stay close to a trusted partner or search consultant for another view and to help you network, it’s much more professional for a third party to represent you and it’s a genuine payoff for all three parties.

 

Hope that helps unlock some of the mystery of going out and coming back!

 

Peter Blair is Principal at Carmichael Fisher APAC.

 

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