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Out on your own - what to expect

A job search on your own - tedious and difficult with little prospect of success

You can try to undertake the process of searching and selecting a company to apply to on your own. But you can not actually be hired until you have completed the following steps successfully:

  • Identify potential employers
  • Contact the company
  • Write and send your dossier
  • Request missing documents and information
  • Possibly obtain a visa, organise a flight, find accommodation...
  • Prepare and attend a job interview
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  • Assess the offered contract and negotiate wages
  • Deal with difficulties during your probationary period

As you can see, this is an elaborate, time-consuming process. In addition to that, you have no guarantee that you will successfully complete the entire process. However, if only one step is mismanaged or omitted, all your efforts could be in vain. That could be painful, especially after having invested a lot of time and patience already - only to discover that you have made the wrong decision.

Here are some of the obstacles you might encounter:

  • You face great difficulty in finding companies that truly suit your skills, goals and expectations
  • You are bombarded with offers that are unattractive and not profitable
  • The job descriptions and profiles are often not clear enough
  • Organising your trip to the company turns out to be elaborate and costly, especially when the company does not cover your expenses
  • The job interview does not take place
  • A few minutes into the interview you find out that you can not come to terms with the company or its representative, or that there is "bad chemistry"
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  • The job offer is sugar-coated and is not all that it seems
  • In spite of your having signed the contract, you are not hired and promises once made are not kept

As you can see, there is a number of obstacles to overcome until you can get aboard a company where you can advance your career.

In addition to that, you might be pressed for time - but remember that accepting an offer simply because of last minute panic might jeopardize your career.