9 ways international experience can boost your career

Going abroad can be more than just a wonderful chance to soak up a foreign culture. By doing an internship abroad, you can also develop vital professional skills. International internships offer unique professional experiences for career-driven young people looking for the opportunity to learn about another culture and boost their career. Check out what international professional experience can do for your career.

 

1. Improved multicultural competence

International work experience makes you better equipped to work in multicultural offices. Learning how to adapt to different cultures and communication styles is a valuable tool that only certain work experiences can offer you. It can be tricky to navigate a multicultural office, but once you become more comfortable and familiar in that kind of context, you’ll be able to handle similar situations for the rest of your life.

 

2. International contacts

Interns abroad are part of an international program filled with career-driven young people from all over the world. Meeting and networking with other young professionals will give you lots of different international contacts. Meanwhile, at your internship you’re able to work alongside many professionals in your field, establishing positive working relationships with industry professionals.

 

3. Real-world, international professional experience

There’s nothing better than professional experience to prepare yourself for your career. Even for entry-level jobs, most positions require at least a couple of internship experiences. The fact that it’s international professional experience makes it all the more impressive.

 

international professional experience

 

4. Picking up a foreign language

Going abroad is the perfect opportunity to learn or perfect a foreign language. As the world becomes increasingly globalized, it’s incredibly important to speak more than one language. What’s great about an international internship is that you hear the local language in an office setting, so your foreign language skills will be developed in a professional context.

 

5. Improved communication skills

When you’re dealing with professionals that are all coming from different cultural backgrounds, effective communication is key. Learning how to express frustrations, desires for change, confusion in the office and everything in between is an important skill for any employee.

 

6. People will know that you can handle an international experience

When it comes to working abroad, you’ve been there, done that. That means you’ll be on the short list for people to work on your company’s international expansion, which can lead to lots of exciting professional and personal opportunities.

 

international professional experience

 

7. Globalized view of your career

Experience abroad offers you a more international worldview and better understanding of your field around the world. Gaining these insights about the international aspect of your career will come in handy later on as you’re climbing the professional ladder. More and more workplaces are placing a stronger emphasis on managers that have an international outlook.

 

8. It’s impressive experience

International professional experience will make a splash on your resume and will help secure an interview. Because it’s not an experience that everybody has, it definitely sets your CV apart. In your interview you can also use anecdotes from your professional experience abroad to discuss your unique qualifications.

 

9. Shows you’re willing to take risks

International professional experience draws attention. It shows that you’re adventurous, gutsy and adaptable – all skills that make for a memorable employee that isn’t afraid to take risks and put themselves out there. Most managers would prefer to have the person who went abroad by their side.

 

 

Apply now to boost your career with an international professional experience!

 

Photo 1. based on _LCM1478, by LabHacker CD, CC-by-2.0

Photo 2. based on World View, by Wendy Cope, CC-by-2.0

Photo 3. based on Alec Ross during media interviews – The Project (R)evolution conference 2012, by US Embassy, CC-by-ND 2.0

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The International Internships Blog is a collaboration by The Intern Group staff, alumni and current participants to give you career advice & tips, program information, & so much more!

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Elizabeth Trovall

After short stints in Argentina and Belize, Elizabeth is finishing up her fourth year in Santiago, Chile. Elizabeth writes about international internships, life abroad and professional development for The Intern Group. She also reports on politics, business and culture in Latin America for public radio and print media. An Austin, Texas native, Elizabeth first left home to earn her journalism degree from the Reynolds Institute of Journalism at the University of Missouri. Besides her friends and family, she misses live music and Mexican food the most.
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