Here at EMTG we have a diverse team of workers that come from various countries across the globe. There are many wonderful things about bravely leaping into the unknown to spend some time working overseas. Living abroad gives one the opportunity to explore new surroundings and interact with other cultures. International work experience can play a key role in enhancing productivity as it helps to build skills which benefit individuals, business and society. At the same time, it can be a worrying and challenging experience for many as there are always risks involved with moving overseas. Yes, you will likely deal with challenges that put you out of your comfort zone.  

As you are moving into a new culture you can at first find yourself struggling to fit in this is all part of the process. But rest assured that this experience can be rewarding at the end. Having international experience could be that little extra push that will help lift your career. If you are currently considering taking the leap, you need to go into this decision prepared and with your expectations managed.  In this blog we will outline 7 benefits of working abroad. 

Flexibility and adaptability 

Working abroad means that you must adapt to new and unfamiliar situations. This will help you to grow your confidence and strengthen your ability to adjust to diverse situations. You will be forced to accept different viewpoints that will inevitably help improve your objectiveness, reasoning and fairness, all of which are qualities that are essential for a successful team player. Your ability to adapt, reflect and communicate are inevitably going to improve. The chance to work with a diverse set of people to achieve common goals will also improve your adaptability skills (Hanson).  

Languages and communication skills 

Of course, it is not easy to learn a new language. Some languages are harder to master than others but by learning the basics it will proof your eagerness to take on new challenges and it builds up your communication skills. Seven out of 10 individuals with international experience describe themselves as confident communicators who can work well with people from other cultures (British Council). Even if you are not interested in learning languages, there is something mesmerizing about being surrounded by words you do not know. At the very least you will learn more about body language and cultural practices that you could apply later in life. 

Innovation skills 

From trying to figure out how to navigate through the city, to immersing yourself in a different corporate structure, settling abroad helps you to gain strong analytical and critical thinking skills. This in turn develops your problem-solving skills and stimulates your need to innovate. The work experience you attain overseas could be more valuable than if you had remained in the comfort of your own city. Being abroad pushes one to be more creative and find alternative solutions. It challenges one to work around different situations and using different processes. Therefore, the portfolio that you build up could end up much more valuable.  

Global mindset 

An important aspect of moving abroad is that you will get to work with people from diverse backgrounds, cultures, and habits. Working abroad will allow you to experience new protocols that can enhance your professional skills and give you a better understanding on how organizations operate.  The business and healthcare fields are becoming more international than ever, and there is an increasing demand for workers that have experience with international environments and the ability to adapt to new surroundings.  

Cultural awareness 

By interacting and working with people from other countries, you increase your cultural awareness, tolerance and sensitivity. An advantage to working abroad is that you will also experience the local culture. This is not only beneficial on a personal level, but it can also boost your professional skills. For example, you could learn about other business practices when dealing with clients. 

Increasing your cultural awareness will not only be beneficial when being surrounded or dealing with internationals but will also develop your intercultural sensitivity for others as you will have a broader understanding that everyone has different values, beliefs and perceptions (Quappe and Cantatore). You may learn about other traditions and customs which in turn can help you with catering towards a transnational audience in future. 

Expanding network 

One of the biggest assets that we as individuals have is our network. Not only can they put in a good word for you when you are applying for a position, but they can also inform you about vacancies and opportunities whenever they are available. Having a global network gives you an edge you will be able to learn about new opportunities in your field from across the globe. You could use your connections to get a leg over the other candidates. 

Building your CV 

Employers are always looking for candidates that stand apart from the crowd and this is exactly what working abroad could do for you. Most prospective employers would be intrigued by the fact that you were employed overseas and would like to learn more about you. 

Moreover, employers want to ensure that the person they hire will not have a hard time adapting to their company culture. This could be good news for you as a professional who has worked overseas has a proven record of being able to adapt easily. 

It is also important to point out that employers are looking for experienced workers. If finding a job in your industry abroad is easier then it makes sense to make the leap. The benefit will be that when you return, most of your competition will not have that same international experience. 

Self-development 

Experiencing a new culture will make you take an inward journey which will help you grow personally. The various difficulties you will encounter abroad will help equip you with skillsets that will enable you to mature as a person and be more self-reliant 

As you push your boundaries to adapt to a foreign working environment, you will experience a growth in your confidence levels and gain a greater drive to take on new challenges (Hanson).  After all, you will be exposed to new customs, ideas and possibly even a new language. All of this is extremely rewarding and can enrich your life. You will constantly be presented with new obstacles and challenges that you will have to figure out.  

Living abroad can benefit your career in more than one way, so it is a career move that is worth considering.  

If you are a nursing considering moving abroad take a look at EMTG’s job page and discover the job opportunities in the Netherlands.   

Let us know if you have any more questions for finding opportunities to work abroad. 

Sources: 

https://www.britishcouncil.org/sites/default/files/_a_world_of_experience.pdf 

https://www.forbes.com/sites/richardhanson3/2016/11/15/5-great-reasons-to-work-abroad/?sh=3a6711f89397 

http://www.insynctraining.eu/artikelen/what_is_cultural_awareness.pdf  

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