It is hard coming to a new country to start a new life. You have to adapt to new surroundings, a new way of doing things, new people and to support all of that, you need to find a new job.
It can be an intimidating experience as you are new to the application process and the UK has a notorious reputation for its paperwork and bureaucracy. Clients that I have worked with have told me of the intimidation they have felt when competing with native speakers for a position.
So, what advantages could a person arriving to a new country possibly have over a native of that country?
One thing I try to help my clients to understand is that what they view as a barrier (the fact that they are foreign), is actually an advantage.
How being different can be more attractive to an employer
With the assumption that most people will apply for a position within which they already have experience in, whether from their home country or any other country, this may actually be an advantage on your application. The key is in how you write your experience.
As I have stated in my other articles, the majority of employers in the UK will require a CV and cover letter, or an application form, then an interview at certain points in the recruitment process. Here is where you get the opportunity to impress them with the experience that you have which is relevant to the role.
The advantage that you have as a migrant is that fact that your skills have been gathered in the same field, but in another country.
What employers want to see
Employers are always thinking of new ways of doing things. Ways to make their business run more efficiently, new strategies that can be implemented to cut costs or save time. The beauty of being from a different culture is the fact that you have the experience of performing the same tasks of a job, but from a different perspective. Employers love this!
Why do think that government leaders are always flying to have discussions with leaders of other countries. To share ideas of best practice!
A strategic marketer working for an organisation in china may approach tasks in his job very differently to that of a strategic marketer in the UK, yet the end goal is the same, to plan effective marketing.
If you are applying to a position in the UK for which you know you have the relevant experience, don’t just list or talk about the tasks that you have done that match the requirements on the job specification. This applies to your CV and in an interview situation.
Mention them, but also show the employer how you did them differently to get the same outcome. How they could benefit from your ideas and experience from another country and how it may benefit them by having a different thinker in their organisation.
Employers will feel like they are gaining a new insight into how they currently do things, which will make them feel like they will have an advantage over their competitors. This is the advantage you will have over a native applicant with experience from companies in the same country.
Being different is not a bad thing, it’s all about how you present yourself to maximize the opportunity in front of you.
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