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THE UNEMPLOYED CHEF HOW DO YOU FIND A JOB IN DENMARK? WHAT IS THE FORMULA TO GET NOTICED? PHOTOGRAPHS ISTOCKPHOTO

TEXT KATHY BORYS SIDDIQUI

CONFESSIONS OF AN UNEMPLOYED EXPAT SPOUSE

HERE IS MY TRIED-AND-TESTED RECIPE: A dash of boldness 1 tablespoon of stepping out of our comfort zone 1 cup of networking 1 cup of luck A whole bunch of research and really looking outside of the box 1 whole LinkedIn profile 2 cups of being open to an unconventional approach

C

CLEARLY WE ARE all different, looking for various jobs, with

an array of experiences and different types and levels of education. This was simply what worked for me. However, in order to find a job, we have to be willing to put ourselves out there, to be vulnerable and bold. Sometimes, we will also be confronted with the need to alter the initial plan a bit. Maybe a whole new career awaits, something we did not foresee. Applying for a position in a foreign country definitely qualifies as stepping out of your comfort zone. Networking is so important in Denmark and having a LinkedIn profile is a big part of it. If you are looking for work in Denmark, you must have a LinkedIn profile - it is your business card. A cover letter is definitely a deal breaker - it is the start of a dialogue between the potential employer and you the potential employee. It matters and can determine whether or not you get an interview. My advice is to write one for each position and not use a template. I recently received an unsolicited job application that was clearly a copy paste motivational letter.

When I arrived in Denmark in 2008, I decided to do something for myself and pursue another degree, (a wonderful experience) and in the evenings I took Danish lessons. My move to Denmark was for personal reasons and I knew that I was here for the long-haul. It was a great opportunity to take some time and invest in myself. Looking back on it now - wow, how lucky! How many people get to do that? To take a break and pursue their passion. The fact of the matter was that I was burned out, coming from a bustling professional life in Poland. I had been working 60 hour weeks as a Business English Instructor in large corporations, translator and business owner. Of course, it was tough to shift into another gear and be a student again. After finishing my studies, I began to search for a job. It was a difficult time, I had to face many challenges, unanswered application letters, emails, self-doubt, low self-confidence. I ended up questioning my move to Denmark. I left a great career, network, friends, family… for what? To feel lost, not needed and very confused. Yes, I wondered what I was doing wrong? Is it me? After a bit of a pity party, I decided to stick it out and see if a different approach would work. I looked outside the box and decided to dive into the deep waters. I started applying for jobs that did not fit my CV or education. I was very uncomfortable and felt vulnerable. I was applying for jobs that fit my skills but they were not positions I had held in the past. When I let go and stopped limiting my search things began to happen. I received four job offers and went for the one furthest away from my comfort zone. It was a great experience that taught me so much. I am very appreciative that my previous boss took a chance on me. THE-INTL

Kathy was born in Poznań, Poland and has lived in four countries and on two continents. Growing up as an immigrant and a cross cultural kid she was able to discover a multicultural world that shaped her into the person she is today. As an adult she experienced life as a re-pat as well as an expat and she is not a stranger to the challenges and opportunities that life abroad offers. Just when she least expected it, she met her Danish husband and once again packed her life in boxes and set off to live the happily-ever-after life in the land of the Vikings and Hygge. Over the span of 10 years she has lived on Fyn, in Jylland and currently in Nordsjælland. Kathy has a background in Cultural Studies and also a degree in American Studies. She has been able to combine her passion and profession as a Cultural Transition and Expat Spouse and Partner Specialist at Active Action.

RELOCATION REINVENTION For global nomads, the definition of a job has taken on a new meaning. The time during a relocation can be used to re-invent yourself - make a plan for the future. It’s a great opportunity to think about what you would like to do, to develop a business plan, turn a passion into a career. More and more expat spouses and partners are looking at portable businesses, especially if they are leading a global nomad life. This means that they and their families will continue to travel. Some will be looking to get hired by a company and others will venture out and start their own businesses. The possibilities are there, it is a matter of really digging deep to find out what you want.

KATHY BORYS SIDDIQUI FOUNDER, ACTIVE ACTION

A firm believer that if you are lacking something - create it. She is the

“ F O R G LO B A L N O M A D S , T H E D E F I N I T I O N O F A J O B H A S TA K E N O N A N E W M E A N I N G . T H E T I M E D U R I N G A R E LO C AT I O N C A N B E U S E D TO R E - I N V E N T YO U R S E L F - M A K E A PLAN FOR THE FUTURE.”

founder of two International Mom Groups in Denmark, a running enthusiast, active lifestyle advocate, wife and mom.

kbs@activeaction.dk www.activeaction.dk

- K AT H Y B O R Y S S I D D I Q U I

MARCH 2019 - WWW.THE-INTL.COM

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