I got inspired to write this post because my good friend is thinking to leave the country and town in which he was born and where he lived decent amount of time.
He didn’t contacted me directly but our mutual friend asked me for the advice to help him with information, experience so he can do this without much stress. I was in similar situation about 10 years ago when I left the Novi Sad (Serbia).
Your will is crucial
The most important thing is your decision and your will and that you made this as final decision. After this is clear you are now in the “operating mode” and you are doing steps to achieve the goal that you set. So, you first need to decide where you would like to live and what is important for you in the life. Personally, I like variety (to have good geographical position and to have access to the sea and mountains within 1 hour of driving), and if possible that is close enough to my home-town so I can visit my parents with a car. I didn’t thought much about the money, to choose the country by the average salary but I believed that I will find my way (first working for someone and then to go to my own).
If you are a technical person it is really easy because you have all infrastructure that you need to start and don’t need any investment, only your free time. My friend is system administrator with long experience. So, the first step is to choose the country and city by personal preferences (what is important for you in the life). This list can help you to make the decision if you are uncertain (look under Monocle’s Most Livable Cities Index).
Choosing the perfect location
After choosing the city, where you will live, you need to find a company where you will work. In which branch would you like to work? Is it banking, insurance, young startup, big corporation, automotive industry, some high-tech company, education/university, public service, transportation, heavy industry, pharmacy, medicine, sport… This is very important because you should choose to work in industry that share your values and where you feel comfortable and where you would like to achieve something more.
Choosing the company
So, now you know in which city and in which branch you will search for companies that you will contact. Using Google you quickly come to these companies and then using LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Slideshare and other resources you quickly come to the key people in these companies so you don’t need to write to some general firstname.lastname@example.org e-mail but you can use this guerilla technique. Try to find HRM (human resources manager) contact, not CEO. If you can not find it at least write to some recruitment e-mail like email@example.com
All you need is the patience and persistence when contact them. And don’t be said if they don’t answer.
Prepare your CV that you will send as attachment, update your LinkedIn profile. You can try to contact first only one to three companies that you like the most and try to expose what you would like to do, your passions and how you can help them (attach the CV and link to LinkedIn profile). Before contacting them, try to get more information about them (find their presentations on Slideshare for example and see the problems they are talking and they are facing and think if you can solve these problems with your expertise).
How to begin?
Because, my friend is system administrator it is perfect because he usually has a lot of remote work and it is perfect for start because he can start working for them from his home-town first and after two months all will be clear. He definitely need to tell them at the beginning that he wants to relocate to their headquarters after the trial period is over.
When trial period is over it is all easier if you and company suits each other. Company will do its work to prepare all papers needed for working and living permission, help finding suitable apartment and organize some language course. You will move, maybe a little bit scared of this big change, but because of your strong will from the beginning you will be really happy that you manage to achieve your first goal.
Living in the new environment
After you relocate all is easier. You will need 6 months for acclimatization to non-stress environment because the definition of stress for average man/woman in the country you have entered is far bellow then your own level of stress trigger. I am still amazed about some things that cause enormous amount of stress among people here. This is the good part of Serbia, you are completely free of stress when you relocate to new environment and “stressful moments there” can not touch you 🙂 You will be happy, more productive and you will start thinking about a lot of new opportunities. When you leave once the zone of simple surviving (and maybe pessimistic environment) you will be amazed.