10 reasons why your education and work experience have no value abroad – and what to do with it, Part 2

Hi, please check out the Part I of this article to catch up on most important reasons why your CV may not work abroad! Here are the next 5 factors:

6. You have no experience in the country where you are applying

If you worked many years in Asia before, employers cannot be sure, whether you will be able to do the same kind of job in Europe. It is not easy to admit, but with every half of year spent working in Europe, you will see that your experience from other countries will be more and more valued. I suppose, in my case it has lasted 1,5 years until my Russian, Chinese and American experience was fully accepted in Germany.

What to do: Find yourself a job 1-2 levels lower than you are used to or look for a position in a company with offices in your country. In a couple of years you will be back on top as you will prove that your skills and qualifications are not worse than those of your European colleagues.

7. You are not studying in one of the top universities

Many foreigner students are glad to accept scholarship from less popular universities. This gives you more flexibility and security during the study, but might cause problems after the graduation.

What to do: Aim for smaller companies. Consulting firms like McKinsey and BCG, large corporations like Bosch and BMW are able to choose from the best candidates from the top universities. Look for those preferring skills and personal qualities to good papers.

8. Your activities were too different from each other

A classic example: you graduated from a Pedagogical University and worked as an English teacher for 3 years in Ukraine. You later moved to Germany and studied IT. Somewhere in between you worked as an Accountant in your dad’s company. Now you look for a position as a Senior Consultant, as you already have many years of experience working with people.

What to do: Clean up your CV. Leave only experience, which demonstrates that you have the right skills for the job. Try to work on large gaps, when you have not been working. A CV where a person was a Financial Manager, a Teacher, an IT Consultant etc. will only provoke the HR officer to ask, whether you know what you want to do in your life.

9. You have grammar mistakes in your documents

Simple, but true: do not rely on your skills of the foreign language. 80% of CVs I work with as a freelancer have grammar mistakes, even though a native speaker has checked them. Try to find somebody reliable with good language skills to read your CV and your letter of motivation.

10. Your CV sucks

As I helped many of my friends to get their CV done, they told their friends, so…one day I happened to work on CVs for international well-educated professionals as a freelancer from time to time. Could you guess, which problems I see in 4 from 5 job applications? The lack of self-presentation, the wrong descriptions of tasks, the lack of IT skills explanation are on the top of the list. Get your CV done PROFESSIONALLY, get support from your university’s career centre, employment agency or an experienced working friend. Do not think that you can make a great heart-breaking CV just because you studied for some years in that new country of yours. Let every single local friend read your CV and ask them if it works.

I wish you good luck in your jobs search!

Sincerely yours,


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