In the Argonaut team we are proud to be part of the journey into the intercultural field for new entrants, both younger graduates and entrepreneurs at an early stage of working life and more experienced consultants switching career path.
Here some tips for moving into the intercultural field, suggested by CultureConnector Correspondent Lara Statham.
Strategies for a career move into the business of culture
Network like crazy
Join local expat and meetup groups, volunteer for the international teams in the organisations you are already in, seek counterparts and contacts in other countries, follow and share channels based outside your region, join SIETAR and get to know more practising specialists. Don’t limit yourself to the intercultural field. When you know your angle, follow that, whether it’s HRD, strategy, leadership, tech, project management, diplomacy, refugee support, education.
Practise explaining what you do
You’ll need an elevator pitch for yourself, and also a crisp description of the entire field, for people who are unfamiliar. You’ll use this more than you expect!
Create routines for yourself
Post on the blogs, read the magazines, attend the webinars and meetings, use those new slides, follow your own learning programme and try new techniques in real work situations whenever possible.
It’s easy to slip back to doing something familiar. Use your discipline, your desire to make your personal vision happen and stay focused, very focused.
Step out of the comfort zone
You may need to remind yourself why, but make sure you’re personally and professionally challenged in your journey to your goal. Walk the talk with your intercultural skills, learn the theory, try the tools, use the the new techniques with difficult customers as well as the easy ones.
Get a coach
Coaches can help you achieve personal and professional transformation faster. Especially if you haven’t had professional coaching before, try to experience it from the client’s point of view. Whether full coaching is your own professional destiny or whether you just wish to borrow some techniques and get inspiration from the world of coaching, you must experience it for yourself first. You’ll form a unique personal bond with your coach, so if you can, get two coaches and see two approaches.
Go back to school
Sometimes forgotten these days, traditional educational institutions such as colleges and universities can accelerate your move into the intercultural field. As well as MAs, MScs and PhDs, there are great shorter course and continuing education options that can be done alongside full-time work.
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