No matter the decision, there are always pro’s and con’s. It’s never easy to make big changes in your life especially when the risk involved is high. Living abroad can be seen as a huge challenge: you will be far from your family, from your favorite restaurant and from the bar where you usually meet your friends. Most of all, you will be far from your comfort zone.
But have you ever thought that maybe what makes you worried and scared can be, in the end, the reason why it was worth trying? Reflect on the pros and cons involved in your decision but never forget to put risk into perspective. Surviving without the support of your network and dealing with new work and life practices can increase your resilience and test your resourcefulness.
It is certain that not everything is a piece of cake but working abroad can challenge you in ways you never expected, bringing you learning opportunities that not only improve your hard skills, but also provide personal growth.
Bellow we give you 9 reasons why you should work abroad.
- 1. It improves your CV
- International experience is universally seen as positive by employers. According to the QS Global Employer Survey Report (the biggest-ever survey on the subject) 6 out of 10 employers around the world give extra credit for international experience.
- 2. Networking opportunities
- Since you are in a new place it is certain you will meet new people and make new friends. It’s a perfect opportunity to make new contacts which in turn have other contacts, and so on. Without being invasive, talk about who you are and what you do. The more people you speak with, the more likely someone is to think of you when they hear about a job opportunity that relates to your profile.
- 3. It improves your soft skills
- The challenges of living abroad provide you with opportunities to improve your soft skills. Soft skills are the intangible personal attributes one has, which are not related to academic learning. Most of the time they are seen by employers as crucial when they are hiring new employees. The most important skills you will probably improve are: communication, adaptability, resilience, creative problem solving, empathy and self-management.
- 4. Put your hard skills into practice
Hard skills can be described as the tangible abilities that are taught in school and can be measured. Despite being a young graduate or an experienced worker, wherever you go you will always gain work experience within your area of expertise or even in new fields.
5. Cultural awareness
We can consider cultural awareness as the most crucial soft skill you can gain while abroad. By living abroad you will assimilate a different culture and new ways of thinking. This will call into question everything you have learnt so far, and make you see life and human beings from a new perspective. By connecting with people significantly different from you, it will raise awareness for important issues such as racism, homophobia, gender inequality and prejudice as a whole.
6. Possibility of having better salary
Some countries have a lack of native talent in certain industries and they are willing to pay more than your home country. This is an important reason why people with stable lives and family move abroad. Before considering working abroad you can investigate about which countries most need your skills.
7. Learning new languages
Due to accelerated globalization, languages skills are now more important than ever. Moreover, studies have shown that multi-linguals solve problems more critically. Working abroad will make you master another language, or even two, than your native one. According to World Economic Forum the 10 languages that will be the most powerful by 2050 are: English, Mandarin, Spanish, French, Arabic, Russian, German, Portuguese, Hindi and Japanese.
8. Personal growth
All the new people you will meet, the new challenges you will face and the new knowledge you will acquire will change you forever. Personality traits can change during our lifespan and being alone and integrated in a new culture can make you become more self-aware. “Who am I? Where do I want to be? What makes me feel fulfilled?” are some of the questions that can eventually cross your mind. The difficulties you go through during your experience and the soft skills you gain will help you answer those questions and make you a better person as well as a better professional.
9. Bring home what you have learnt
Last but not least, if you come back home, you will certain bring all you have learnt with you and influence others around you, starting with suggesting positive changes at workplace. This is the ultimate power of globalization and your most important weapon to make the world a better place.
We have given you more than enough reasons to work abroad. What are you waiting for? Just dare!
Start your journey by searching for jobs that can fit your profile and countries where you would like to live.
By: Joana Correia