Nick Elliott offers more insights on working culture across Europe.
International Jet-setter Nick Elliott reports on the differences between three very different working cultures. Vive la difference!
You may have been to a graduate fair before or you may be new to it. You may be a 3rd year wanting to secure a graduate opportunity or you may be a 1st or 2nd year just exploring the market. You don’t know who the companies are sending to the event, is it a Human Resources representative or a departmental representative and do any of them have the capacity to hire?
It’s hard to escape the message that social media as a tool for career development is here to stay, but how can you harness this resource to develop your career in the charity sector? As a recent post ‘How LinkedIn changed my life’ by charity specialist and blogger Alex Swallow shows, the rewards are there if you’re prepared to put the effort in.
Many students in the UK are from international backgrounds. For example, 60% of postgraduate students in higher education are from non EU countries (source: AGCAS). In the current job market there is considerable power in being a ‘global graduate’. It’s a VERY important point to build on if you are an international student and relevant to all students, since the qualities that come with being a ‘global graduate’ are sought by MANY employers across MANY sectors.
Most people would probably agree that social media plays a hugely important role not just in social networking but also in people’s professional life. This trend however is now being reflected amongst employers, who are turning to social media to help them attract the best people for their graduate roles. Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn are powerful channels for them to promote their brand and post vacancies. However, that is going even further now with some employers such as PwC having their own YouTube channel – CareersPwC. Through this medium, they share insights into working in their different departments, as well as employability videos to help students and graduates improve their interview techniques.
Careers information often talks about using social media for your job search. Almost everyone nowaways is on twitter or facebook or linkedin or googleplus. Social media is all around us. We can be inundated by information from it and we can waste a lot of time on it but we can also harness it for our benefit to crowdsource funding for new projects, learn about career insights, network with professionals and enhance our job searching. How do we do this?
Ah, networking. A word that instils joy in all of us. Doesn't it? Oh, apparently not. In fact the list of the words I've heard associated with networking includes...well, those we'd usually associate with tasks like taking the bins out, cleaning behind the fridge, and answering calls from mobile insurance salespeople halfway through a really tense bit of Breaking Bad.
So why do even those of us who claim to be outgoing, sociable types, view this networking business as such a chore? Partly, it's the name. "Networking". Just that name alone conjurs pictures of pin-striped suits, elevator pitches and glistening business cards. Like some watered down version of American Psycho.
But say to someone: "Hey, how about heading to this event where we can have a drink and a good chat with some interesting people who may potentially make our lives easier?"...and the reaction looks rather different. Because that's essentially what networking is.
At an event this week at The Courtauld Institute of Art, an alumna gave us her own views on the subject. Although very much a people-person, she confessed to finding the concept of networking a little daunting: "Usually I start by finding someone who looks quite awkward so I can save them - and that means I don't have to interrupt someone else's conversation." Another key tip was to take the pressure off yourself. You're never going to meet everyone in the room, so just focus on having a few really good conversations. As this article points out, "It’s better to have 5 people willing to help you out than it is to have 500 that simply know your name."
Here at International Futures we’re all very excited about our online international careers research tool – GoinGlobal. It’s a premium website which allows you to search for literally millions of jobs, internships and volunteering opportunities, across the globe. Whatever your career goals, and wherever you plan to work, GoinGlobal allows you to find the opportunities that are right for you.
As well as the powerful job search function, GoinGlobal also offers a superb employer directory detailing over 400,000 companies worldwide (yes, 400,000). This is an invaluable source of market intelligence, giving you the lowdown on the top employers in any given sector, across the globe. Want to work for an accountancy firm in Papua New Guinea? Find them on GoinGlobal – along with contact details, number of employees and annual sales. This allows you to determine who is likely to be recruiting, and how to contact them.
Last – but by no means least – the site features dozens of extremely detailed country profiles. These give you the lowdown on individual country’s’ major job sites, graduate recruitment fairs, professional organisations and masses of other useful info. You’ll also find interview etiquette tips for a particular country, visa and tax information, networking groups, CV & cover letter guidelines, advice on relocating, cultural information, and much, much more.
I know I’m gushing about this site, but it really is a bit special; and so easy to use. Here’s the catch – it’s a premium, subscription service. This means’ you can’t just access it freely. Your college may already subscribe (most of the University of London colleges do), so you’ll need to contact your careers service to find out how to get a personal account. Once signed up, you can use it from any computer, anywhere you are, where you’ll find a whole world of careers at your finger tips. Enjoy!