When you leave college and go on the hunt for your first job, you likely spend a lot of time furiously searching for a role relating to the degree that you’ve just spend four years completing. Being able to find a company that is the right fit for you, as well as you being the right fit for them doesn’t always happen overnight.
It’s often the case that you will go on several interviews with a variety of companies before you find the job that you want to say yes to; most people forget that the people who contact you aren’t just interviewing you, you are also interviewing them. Once you find a place to work in a job that is fulfilling both mentally and financially, you can get comfortable and get your feet under their table.
A job isn’t just the thing that pays your bills and sorts out your rent. It’s your chance to expand your horizons, grow your experience and cement your future. What do you do, then, when you’ve been comfortable in your job for a few years and you get an opportunity handed to you on a plate?
If your manager strolled into your office and told you that you were being considered for a promotion, you’d be ecstatic. What if they told you that your promotion was going to send you abroad?
Putting aside any commitments that you currently have with your family and your house, you need to consider how your choice next will affect your career and the future of it. This could go either two ways for you: you could say no due to the commitments that are still where you are, or you could say yes and embrace the chance to push your boundaries and get a change of scene.
You may have previously worked abroad during your intern years with college and developed a taste for travel, and if you’ve managed that then you know that a huge change like this one offered to you is going to be something that will enrich your life and the experiences that you could have.
Relocating your life from one place to another is not going to be an easy process, and that’s less to do with real estate than it is for your own mental and emotional wellbeing. Even if your family are completely behind you and are happy to relocate to your new place of work, you have to get a lot of the internal battle out of the way about the whole situation; how will you cope in a new country?
Many global countries have offices in several locations and the best thing that you can do when this kind of offer falls into your lap is seize it with both hands and just go for it. Life isn’t about rehearsals and being offered the chance to move abroad and have a different office view could change the lives of your children and even your own.
There are a good few things that you need to take into account, though, when you decide to take the chance with your job offer abroad. It is not a small consideration and you will need to go away and think about it before immediately saying yes. We’ve come up with a list of things that you should really think about before you go for it and change your life.
Lifestyle & Culture
Moving abroad isn’t the same as moving to another town in the same country. There are a huge range of lifestyle changes that will take a lot of getting used to, not to mention the fact that there will be a culture shock when you go to a new place to live as opposed to a holiday. You really should consider that it won’t just be working in the sunshine; there will be language, food, work ethic and quality of life differences that can be a shock to the system.
If you get the chance, you should aim to have some time in the new country before you decide whether you should make a permanent move there. Let’s not forget that your choice is going to greatly affect your career and your family, it’s not just a willy-nilly move that you should do on impulse.
Do your homework and you won’t regret your choice. They might drive on the wrong side of the road. The weather may be too stuffy, too cold, too wet. These aren’t daft things to think about, either, because your quality of life is at stake.
When you move to a new country, you lose your camaraderie with the people in your existing office and you won’t have your friends ready for a drink on a Friday after work.
This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, because as a human being, you are able to be sociable and make new circles of friends. The case is really whether or not you want to start all over again, especially if you have a good group of people around you as it is.
You need to be proactive – and brave – and put yourself out there in a new country and new office. Ask your employer about opportunities and benefits in the new office, as you may discover that there are social events and mixers available for you to enjoy. Should you decide to take up the offer to move, you should be prepared to be proactive and don’t give up; a new network takes time to build.
Cost Of Living
In your comfortable role where you are, it’s likely you’ve got used to working to a certain budget and standard, and it’s this budget that will change when you are swapping currencies. Does your job offer come with a pay rise?
If so, then you need to start doing your calculations for what your new country will be costing you to live, and you will understand whether the move will be worth it for you. There are jobs out there that pay more in other countries compared to others, it’s just whether your role is one on that list. It is never worth leaving a comfortable job and salary to go to a new role in a new country if it won’t be cost-effective for your family.
If your current management really need you to relocate, it could be an opportunity for you to negotiate a more exciting salary and a bigger list of benefits which will really help.
You have been approached by your company management and they have presented this opportunity to you as they believe that you are the right person for this job. With this in mind, you need to ask whether they are going to be paying for you to relocate, as it’s for them and not for yourself in the first instance. Sit down with them to find out the budget for your relocation and what this includes, from the possible need for visas, house costs, transport and shipping furniture.
A company that really wants you will bend over backward to ensure that you get what THEY want in a comfortable and efficient way.
The Long Game
Should you decide to go ahead with the move and relocate for your job, you need to have an endgame in mind. Are you choosing to go ahead to further your career in general or do you have an impulsive response to big questions and you can’t say no?
You don’t need to know what your life is going to look like in twenty years, but you do need to know that you won’t get out there and instantly regret your choice. Understanding the long game of this epic choice is a necessity before you go. It’s not a ‘say yes, think later’ moment. Your choices now have the power to affect your entire life and if you don’t have a plan, then it’s time to sit and make one.
Your whole move is going to depend on your research skills. You need to know all about the new area that you’re heading off to including schools, safety and crime, exchange rates, hobbies and things to do, transport and access; all of these things have to factor.
If you’re used to getting a coffee and a brownie on a Friday, check out whether there are nice places to buy said treats. Your life will be changing, here, and this means even the smallest and seemingly insignificant details need to be considered.
Being offered such a prestigious opportunity is going to cause some shifting in the world beneath your feet. How you choose to handle it will be greatly depending on who you currently have in your life and around you.
Ultimately, this decision is going to come down to whether this move makes sense for your future, and if it does then this is an opportunity you must not pass up. A move abroad doesn’t come around often!
This post has been contributed by Ryan Gatt, it may contain affiliate links.