How to survive being transferred overseas

Every year, many New Zealanders find themselves face to face with the opportunity to gain experience by working overseas. Whether you have been actively searching to be transferred overseas or the opportunity has presented itself unexpectedly, surviving the move to a new country can be tiring, so it is important to be prepared for whatever is coming your way.

The first step towards success when being transferred overseas is understanding why your company has decided to invest their time and money to move you to a new location. In making the decision to move you to another office, your company is saying that they believe that the people in your destination would benefit from your particular skill set and that you being relocated will be beneficial to the company. Understanding what skills that you have that make you the best fit for the job will help you to perform at your best when you start working in your new office.

Be prepared

The best way of making sure that your company feels that your transfer was a good decision for the company is to prepare yourself before your move. A good idea is to take the time to visit your new country before moving there, visit your new office and talk to some of the people who will potentially be in your new team. Visiting your destination city and office will help you to get a feel for what your new life will be like and will help you to determine whether it is the best move for you. Do your research on your new location, their laws, regulations and business practices so that you are fully prepared for what is to come.

Speak to someone else from within your organisation who has made the move previously as they will be able to provide you with helpful tips and valuable insights as to what to expect as an expat. Speaking to someone with similar experience will help to prepare you and minimise cultural shock so that your transition is easier. This will help you to be sure that this move is really the best thing to do for you and your company. By facilitating your transfer, your company is investing large amounts of time and money into you as so it is important to be sure that you are fully committed and prepared for what is to come.

Use the professionals

Once your move has been approved by your company, you have done your research and you have decided that it will be the best thing for you, it is time to start planning the physical move. Here at Allied Pickfords we recommend that the best way to ensure that your move goes smoothly and as stress free as possible, is to make use of a professional moving company. We are well versed in international moves, having been voted EMMAS International Moving Company of the Year for the past 5 years straight, so you can be assured that when you choose to move with Allied Pickfords, your experience will be next to nothing. When preparing your home for a move overseas, you should embrace minimalism.

Think about which items you will really need in your new home and cull those items which do not make the cut. Furniture is not made to be transported, with the long distances leaving it at risk of damage so a good option is to leave it in storage in New Zealand. Here at Allied Pickfords we can offer our customers secure storage options wherever they are located. Our storage facilities are specially designed to ensure that your items are protected from the elements and are especially suited to storing furniture for long periods of time. Your new city or town will have places where you can purchase new furniture and household items so you keep your furniture in storage in New Zealand ready for when you return.

Embrace the new culture

Once you arrived in your new country it is important to remember to not spend your time comparing your new home to New Zealand as this will lead to homesickness. The phrase ‘you’re not in Kansas anymore’ is a good one to keep in mind, your new friends and work colleagues do not want to hear about how much better it is in New Zealand. Realise that the culture in your new home has been established over many years and that people are not going to change for you.

Embrace the new culture, and do your best to fit in with the locals, you may surprise yourself with how much you like it! It is important to expect some culture shock when you arrive in your new country. This might not happen right away and could take a few months to sink in after the honeymoon period has gone away and you begin to miss things about New Zealand. This is a normal reaction and one which is not going to go away overnight, getting used to your new home will take time.

To help distract yourself from your homesickness, join a sports team, take part in some volunteering or join an association such as rotary. This will also help you to make new friends and connections outside your workplace. Friends are the best way of making sure that you survive moving to a new country. Friends will be there for you to distract you when you are feeling homesick, and will be able to teach you about the history and culture of your new home.

Surviving an overseas transfer requires a good attitude and a motivation to learn. To ensure that the move itself goes as smoothly as possible and that your transition from New Zealand to your new home is as stress free as possible, use a professional moving service such as Allied Pickfords. Once you have arrived in your new country, it is important to throw yourself into every opportunity that presents itself to you. Be open to meeting new people, trying new things and going to new places, and your transfer will be a successful one.