Would you like to receive payments in such currencies and see your earnings multiply when converted to other currencies? Or if you are already paid in USD or EUR, would you be willing to increase your earnings while working remotely or anywhere in the world?
If this idea sounds interesting to you, keep reading. Perhaps the paragraph above sounded a bit like “preposterous promise” or “snake oil salesmen”, but if you give me a chance, I’ll show you how it is not only very concrete, but also easier to reach than you imagine.
This is the first in a series of articles that I’m going to write with tips based on real knowledge and experience to help you develop an international career.
I could write a few paragraphs about my life and career here, but I don’t think that kind of biography – usually done by people looking to promote themselves – adds nothing to you. Right now, all you need to know is that I work as a freelancer in my home office 100% of the time since 2015 and that the vast majority (more than 90%) of my clients are from the USA, Canada and European countries.
If you’re really curious to know a little more about me, take a look here. Otherwise, read on for what really matters.
Before presenting my tips in more detail, you need to answer this question: do you want to work from home 100% of the time, like I do? Or do you intend to move to another city, state or even country (that is, your objective involves relocation)?
This question may seem simple, but it influences on various aspects, such as the level of fluency in English (or another language) required, certifications, documentation, among others. In addition, some of the freelancing platforms that I’ll present in future articles are only for remote work (for example: Toptal), others only for relocation (for example: Landing.Jobs ), and some for both types (for example: StackOverflow Careers).
You don’t have to choose just one of these types, but keep in mind that each one of them will influence the strategy to be followed.
In summary, these are the requirements that I think are necessary for you to be able to work from home 100% of the time for companies from abroad:
English: intermediate for speaking, intermediate/advanced for listening – unfortunately this is an item that you can’t run away from: you need to speak English at least at an intermediate level. But you don’t need to worry so much or give up right away because of that. I see a lot of people with conversation skills good enough for work environment who are afraid to apply for jobs in other countries because they don’t trust their own skills.
My tip here is – your clients will know that you’re not a native speaker and will accept that. They know how to get along (and talk) with people from other countries and understand that you can stutter sometimes or miss a few words. As long as you’re able to establish reasonable communication, it should be enough in most cases.
Another super hot tip: it’s way more important to understand what clients say to you than to speak fluently. Like I said earlier, you can (and certainly will) make some mistakes, but the worst thing is if you don’t understand your clients and keep asking them to repeat what they said. Put yourself in their shoes: would you feel comfortable talking to someone who asks you to repeat things all the time because they didn’t understand what you said?
Resume in English – all platforms for working abroad that I know of require you to upload a resume in English, so be ready to translate yours or build one from scratch.
This topic is a little more complex, as the requirements vary widely from country to country and from company to company. Briefly summarized, some of the main requirements are:
Intermediate/advanced level in the language of the country you’re moving to, sometimes being necessary to prove such skill with a certification – you’re moving to another country, so communication will be 100% in another language, as well as in person. There’s no way to “survive” this without having at least intermediate level of proficiency. Some companies require certifications like IELTS, TOEFL, among others. In this case you’ll need to prepare for an exam to obtain this type of certification.
Documentation / work visa – it’s usually not necessary to worry so much about this item because the vast majority of companies understand that if they want to bring in an employee from another company, they need to provide the required documentation themselves. But in case you need to get documents for your spouse and/or children, for example, beware that not all companies help with (and most don’t pay for) documentation for third parties.
Well, guys… Unfortunately there’s no way to cover everything in one article. In the next posts I’ll present in detail some of the best platforms for freelancers and bring more tips to help you get your first remote job, covering subjects such as interview, resume, and others.
What did you think of this article? Leave a comment below! This way you’ll help me improve this blog’s content more and more 😉