THE BIG LEAP – TO LEAVE OR NOT TO LEAVE

That is question that’s getting lot of attention lately as the dollar drops,
business confidence stalls, and the grass looks greener in overseas pastures.
A recent survey reported that the number of people thinking of leaving New Zealand has risen by seven percent since the same question was asked year ago.
Of course, huge numbers of Kiwis have always travelled overseas for the big OE. It’s part of our national psyche.
New Zealanders have always been attracted to better work opportunities, higher salaries and the chance to develop their careers.
But statistically young New Zealanders who go away, nearly all return at some stage.
While one kind of leaving is the leaving for greener pastures, the other kind of leaving is to take up the overseas assignment.
If you want your career to move forward, it’s commonly accepted that you have to be prepared to move outside the country.
As Mark Story outlines, in our cover story Export Yourself, “for growing number of our best and brightest, career advancement, like it or not, means going global”.
Assuming professional skills are given, the more esoteric personal skills take on added meaning when you start living in new culture. To succeed you’d better have sense of humour and the ability to fail and bounce.
Story finds however, that the one problem with sending people overseas though – is when they return home.
“The biggest problem for people working overseas is having their experience valued once they return to New Zealand.
“In the case of Trade New Zealand, around 10 percent of executives end up taking job offers in the host country.”
Then there’s the professional who’s so skilled at walking into new assignments, like Hongkong Shanghai Banking Corporation CEO, Simon Edwards, who told Story “it’s been never dull moment for over 20 years”.

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