"...I quickly found out that your previous experience doesn’t really matter, nor it matters if you are very good at what you do. At the end of the day, you will need to adapt your knowledge and experience to a new job market with new rules. After finishing the Kick-Start Program, you will have internalized a type of mantra: focus and expand your network."
We arrived in Malmö from Barcelona, my home, at the beginning of the year, with tons of hope in our luggage, as well as some fears. My partner is Brazilian, but she had previously lived in Stockholm for many years. We had a very good life in Barcelona, enjoying our family and friends, with stable jobs and amazing weather.
However, I've always wanted to live abroad, and thought it's never too late to try. When my partner received a good job offer from a large Swedish company in Lund, we didn’t hesitate at all: It was time to move forward!
How can we manage such a big challenge and start again from scratch in another country? Well, every person goes through that in their own way. There are several challenges that are mandatory for any newcomer: finding an apartment (such a big challenge in Sweden!), looking for a job, going through a dark, long and wet winter, finding a Swedish course…we didn’t know anyone here, so we had to deal with it on our own.
Just when I began to feel a little bit lost and discouraged I started to attend the “Kick Start Program” at International Citizen Hub Lund. I had already read about it in my country, and was very excited about what I was going to find there.
After going through the entire program, I can definitely say it was worth it. If you are a newcomer it´s the place to be. Cynthia, Lisa and Martina will give you a warm welcome, besides, there you will meet many interesting people from all over the world in a situation similar to yours.
At the hub, you will get valuable info and useful tips on interesting topics for newcomers, like, where to start to look for jobs, how you should prepare for a job interview, how to update your CV. There are of course other topics than job hunting!
By the way, when it comes to jobs, I didn’t think it would be very hard to find one here. I have a background in customer care/administration and after some months of extensive job hunting, I can confidently say that I was wrong. I would advise you to try and come here without high expectations. It’s good to have a plan, of course, but you must be flexible and ready for change.
Attending the sessions on the Swedish job market at International Citizen Hub Lund, I quickly found out that your previous experience doesn’t really matter, nor it matters if you are very good at what you do. At the end of the day, you will need to adapt your knowledge and experience to a new job market with new rules. After finishing the Kick-Start Program, you will have internalized a type of mantra: focus and expand your network. The first time I heard it, I thought it was an obvious thing to do, and I’m sure that this is very important, not only in Sweden, but everywhere. The point is that as a newcomer you have to start your network from scratch and you will realize the importance of doing so when trying to get a job in Sweden.
Just three months after we arrived, the corona crisis hit us hard. Like almost everywhere in the world, here the situation is deeply changing the way we live, forcing people to adapt to a new reality. I’m sure that for us newcomers it will be easier, since we are used to dealing with changes.
/ Andrés Carles