Written by Alex Eggerking
Moving countries is a big deal. For those of us who have had to hunt for a job here in New York sometimes it is hard even to know where to start. But fear not, AWNY has your back!
On 19 April, Belinda Jackson (of Working in the USA, and also AWNY’s recently elected President) presented on the ins and outs of working here in the USA, covering the job hunt as well as some cultural aspects of working in American firms. Belinda’s presentation was followed by a detailed Q&A session with a panel of Australians who work in recruiting or have themselves successfully gone through the process of locking down work over here.
For those who weren’t able to make it to the event, we have distilled down a few key takeaways from the presentation and discussion:
- Network, network, network: Americans network as a way of life, and you are going to need to learn to do the same. If you don’t have business cards through work, get some printed (Vistaprint or Moo are good places to start). Leverage off your network to ask for introductions, and ask those introductions for further introductions. And always follow up any meeting or coffee with a prompt thank you email. In this age where internet job applications might be screened by a computer robot rather than a human being, your resume may in some cases not even be reaching a decision maker. Your networking efforts may well be the most important means of finding job opportunities!
- Sell yourself: We Aussies aren’t always great at singing our own praises, but this is a crucial skill to learn. Have your elevator pitch down, and be able to speak to your strengths and experience with confidence.
- Pay attention to the little things: Is your resume 1 page, and formatted in US letter size, rather than A4 size? Perhaps these sound like trivial things, but they can all make a difference to the American person forming a first impression of you.
- Transitioning career in New York is tough, but not impossible: If you are attempting a career transition, you are going to need to work hard to convince an employer that you have the skills and experience necessary to do the job on day one without further training. But back yourself, stick with it, and utilize all the networks available to you (like AWNY!).
Huge thanks to Belinda and our fabulous panel members for their time and valuable insight: Kaylie Stansfield, Senior Marketing Director, Lead Generation & Retention at Sterling Backcheck, Markos Moya, Managing Director at Raines International, and Dino Sawaya, Vice President at Argand Partners.