Looking for jobs abroad, anyone have tips?

newjourno

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I am a soon-to-be 26-year-old Journalism and Media Studies graduate and have experience writing content for national media and international clients on a freelance basis.

I'd like to do a stint abroad for a while but don't have contacts in the right places which makes it very hard, nor do I have any dual nationality.

I've tried to send applications out via email and never hear back. I've sent a few via LinkedIn and sometimes try to cold email editors and people with decision making power (I've got a few freelance jobs this way but that's about it).

So far, I've only had one interview for a job with a multinational company in Kenya eight months ago but the employer reverted to me saying that they have decided to freeze hires.

I've now accepted that it's nearly impossible to get into a Western country for my field of work as most of the companies there can usually just hire a local so I've tried concentrating my efforts on potential employers in Asia and the Middle East but am yet to have any luck. I may be valued by English language media mediums and organizations in those regions.

I'd appreciate any form of advice which can help me increase my chances of finding a job.

I'm not too fussy about the region as long as it is safe. It can be a third-world or first-world country.

I will send my LinkedIn profile to anyone who would like to review it or give me tips.
 
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Johnatan56

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You're going to be stuck freelancing, they will all hire local first for those positions, and journalism in general saw quite a bit of contraction in terms of number of jobs.

Your best bet is to keep getting freelance gigs and just traveling around with the budget you have, I am highly doubtful you'll find a job that a local wouldn't take preference for. Sorry to be so pessimistic in regards to your circumstances, but I don't really see a way to help you and don't think anyone on this forum is high up your field so they'd be able to organize something.
 

biometrics

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Wouldn't it make more sense to look for a job locally, after emigrating? So perhaps emigrating should be your primary task?

Edit: journalism has shrunk in the past 14 years (since the iPhone) by probably 66%.
 

newjourno

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You're going to be stuck freelancing, they will all hire local first for those positions, and journalism in general saw quite a bit of contraction in terms of number of jobs.

Your best bet is to keep getting freelance gigs and just traveling around with the budget you have, I am highly doubtful you'll find a job that a local wouldn't take preference for. Sorry to be so pessimistic in regards to your circumstances, but I don't really see a way to help you and don't think anyone on this forum is high up your field so they'd be able to organize something.

Thanks and the honesty is refreshing.

I've accepted long ago that I will probably not land a job in the US or UK. I have a glimmer of hope that I could potentially get something in the UAE or Asian market (due to the English media outlets there and fact that South Africans may be valued for these roles) but at the same time, I don't have a Television background and most of the South Africans that I've seen getting gigs there are in the TV niche with brands like Aljazeera, TRT World and CGTN.

I'm also open to communication and PR roles i,e things that link with Journalism but are not Journalism where I can transfer my skills.

I'm hoping to go into PR or Communications soon. I'm lucky enough to have a job with a media outlet now but honestly see little chance of growth (the older folks are holding to their jobs for as long as possible and I've also noticed a trend now where people retire, resign and are not replaced).

I do freelance work on the side but it's more to upskill rather than earn money.
 
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newjourno

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Wouldn't it make more sense to look for a job locally, after emigrating? So perhaps emigrating should be your primary task?

I'm not sure if it will be possible for me to immigrate (Journalism is not really regarded as a critical skill and I don't have a ton of money) so it seems like a work VISA route is more realistic.
 

newjourno

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I'm also now trying to include my searches to multinational organizations within SA, maybe that will open the door to something abroad in future.

I've been browsing LinkedIn and noticed that there are people with my qualification that managed to land jobs abroad. I currently have a job but the company only operates within SA and its not doing well financially which halts any hope for growth in the near future.
 

Jings

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I'm also now trying to include my searches to multinational organizations within SA, maybe that will open the door to something abroad in future.

I've been browsing LinkedIn and noticed that there are people with my qualification that managed to land jobs abroad. I currently have a job but the company only operates within SA and its not doing well financially which halts any hope for growth in the near future.
Why not consider working on becoming a social media influencer in your spare time? Cryptocurrency investments have surged 400 percent and token owners pay good fiat money for influencers with decent amount of followers.

As an example, average fee for a YT influencer with over 100k followers is about $2000.

 

scudsucker

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Not that I want to denigrate your advice or @newjourno career options, but "social media influencer" is not a new career. We used to call them "snake-oil salesmen" and before that "con-men".

The only difference between now and 1861 is that the crowd get ginned up by themselves, and they are true believers, rather than needing a paid accomplice to "produce" evidence of the efficacy of the "cure".
 
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newjourno

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Why not consider working on becoming a social media influencer in your spare time? Cryptocurrency investments have surged 400 percent and token owners pay good fiat money for influencers with decent amount of followers.

As an example, average fee for a YT influencer with over 100k followers is about $2000.


I do some freelance jobs in my spare time but I'm more of a production type of guy. I'm good at doing the media production behind my computer and talking when I need to but I'm not just after money.

My dream has always been to either work for a sports or humanitarian content production/communications role.
 

Jings

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I do some freelance jobs in my spare time but I'm more of a production type of guy. I'm good at doing the media production behind my computer and talking when I need to but I'm not just after money.

My dream has always been to either work for a sports or humanitarian content production/communications role.

Sounds like you're really passionate about your field. Have you maybe considered a partnership to help fulfill your goals?

More and more media content is generated by small production groups instead of media companies. A new generation of media producers. You fit the age group perfectly.
 

newjourno

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Sounds like you're really passionate about your field. Have you maybe considered a partnership to help fulfill your goals?

I am. I've tried to send my CV to HR's of a lot of companies and have probably tried to get in touch with nearly every sports editor in SA.

I have rarely heard back. I've tried to apply for media opportunities that pop up with the UN Volunteer Programme which deploys volunteers abroad but have not heard anything back (from what I've heard the competition is really intense for those posts).

When I do hear back from the people I contacted, things usually fizzle out or if they offer me something, the financial incentives are not good. As mentioned before, I'm not a money-driven guy but I'm no longer prepared to sell myself for slave wages either (unfortunately this does happen in this sector, two and a half years ago, I was earning under R5000 working for a community news sector). I've managed to work myself to better wages today.

It just is frustrating that I've only got freelance opportunities with the overseas clients I've managed to get.

One of my admitted weaknesses is that I'm deeply introverted and for this reason, I try to network online via LinkedIn and email where I can. Communications/Media is unfortunately one of those fields were introverted people can get the hard end of the stick.

This is not to say that I'm afraid to speak to people. I speak to people on almost a daily basis and get the vast majority of my interviews done smoothly but I'm not great when it comes to charisma.
 

Jings

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I am. I've tried to send my CV to HR's of a lot of companies and have probably tried to get in touch with nearly every sports editor in SA.

I have rarely heard back. I've tried to apply for media opportunities that pop up with the UN Volunteer Programme which deploys volunteers abroad but have not heard anything back (from what I've heard the competition is really intense for those posts).

When I do hear back from the people I contacted, things usually fizzle out or if they offer me something, the financial incentives are not good. As mentioned before, I'm not a money-driven guy but I'm no longer prepared to sell myself for slave wages either (unfortunately this does happen in this sector, two and a half years ago, I was earning under R5000 working for a community news sector). I've managed to work myself to better wages today.

It just is frustrating that I've only got freelance opportunities with the overseas clients I've managed to get.

One of my admitted weaknesses is that I'm deeply introverted and for this reason, I try to network online via LinkedIn and email where I can. Communications/Media is unfortunately one of those fields were introverted people can get the hard end of the stick.

This is not to say that I'm afraid to speak to people. I speak to people on almost a daily basis and get the vast majority of my interviews done smoothly but I'm not great when it comes to charisma.

Well I was just pointing out options besides working for an employer as you've trying so long without success.

Don't underestimate your abilities as an introvert. I'm an introvert too yet managed a department with a staff compliment of 26 for eight years.

Anyway, this a period where opportunities present themselves so don't be surprised if your wish is granted.

Please keep us posted.
 

newjourno

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Well I was just pointing out options besides working for an employer as you've trying so long without success.

Don't underestimate your abilities as an introvert. I'm an introvert too yet managed a department with a staff compliment of 26 for eight years.

Thanks, I'm just hoping I can get a yes, all it will take is one.
 

newjourno

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Well I was just pointing out options besides working for an employer as you've trying so long without success.

Don't underestimate your abilities as an introvert. I'm an introvert too yet managed a department with a staff compliment of 26 for eight years.

Anyway, this a period where opportunities present themselves so don't be surprised if your wish is granted.

Please keep us posted.

I suddenly had some interest from two companies locally about three weeks ago and have not heard from any since.

I'm open to a new challenge at this point, even in another city in SA as long as the offer is good. I'm not intern level now.

Once did invite me for a test after the interview but I've not heard since then (two weeks ago).

The silent wait is the worst thing. In the past, I've contacted people for feedback and annoyed them so I won't do that anymore. I've learnt that if people really want to hire you, they will contact you.
 

Jings

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I suddenly had some interest from two companies locally about three weeks ago and have not heard from any since.

I'm open to a new challenge at this point, even in another city in SA as long as the offer is good. I'm not intern level now.

Once did invite me for a test after the interview but I've not heard since then (two weeks ago).

The silent wait is the worst thing. In the past, I've contacted people for feedback and annoyed them so I won't do that anymore. I've learnt that if people really want to hire you, they will contact you.
Glad you haven't given up looking for a job.

What are you doing currently to keep yourself busy?
 

newjourno

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What are you doing currently to keep yourself busy?

I do have a full-time job right now. I've learned a lot from it but I've now come to a point where I've plateaued and can't really grow from here on (I'm just not one who can work in an environment where I've plateaued for a long period). Technically, there are more senior roles within the company but they are almost impossible to get right now because the company is not doing well and so everyone is just holding onto their jobs for as long as they can.

I did manage to get two promotions in the last year due to people resigning but at this point, there is not much hope of advancing even further.

I also do a few jobs on a freelance basis externally from my main work.
 
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