Potential employers aren’t just looking for technical skills and experience. They’re also concerned whether candidates are a good cultural fit with the organisation.
Unfortunately, this is where it can be especially tricky for international candidates. This is due to the way we assess people’s capabilities and personalities. We usually make important decisions – such as hiring and firing – based on our own cultural norms.
For example, if I’m from a cultural background that highly values “open and honest conversations”, I’m likely to perceive someone who’s reserved and tirelessly diplomatic as perhaps being a liability when it comes to negotiating, managing conflict and even business planning. Without considering that person’s cultural differences as an asset to my organisation, I’m instead likely to view them as a less-than-perfect cultural fit. As a result, I’d offer the job to someone I consider to be a better cultural fit.
Which bring us back to the question, how employable do you think you are? Or more specifically, how employable do your potential employers thing you are?
This is a key challenge we tackle in Project Global Citizen and is equally applicable to both international and domestic students who want to succeed in a global marketplace.
During the program, you’ll gain insights into culturally-influenced expectations that no-one may have thought to explain to you before.
- Previous Project Scholars have commented “I wish someone had explained this to me when I first arrived in Australia.”
- Another Scholar has expressed that “up until now, I never understood the expectations of my lecturers and fellow students”.
- Learning these “unwritten rules” about the local culture is important not just to your student life. The cultural bridging skills you develop during Project Global Citizen will also be critical for your professional life when working internationally.
Whether you’re an international student in Australia or an Australian seeking employment internationally, you already have a suite of transferable skills that should be valuable to organisations, especially multinational companies, government employers and companies with international clients.
However, potential employers may not initially realise this. Instead, they could have concerns about your ability to be a good cultural fit in the workplace.
Project Global Citizen puts you at an advantage in this regard.
- By showcasing your Project Global Citizen micro credential on your CV or LinkedIn profile, potential employers can immediately see that you have developed an understanding of the cultural dimensions impacting behaviour in Australia and that you have demonstrated an ability to be a good cultural fit in any global workplace.
- This provides you with a competitive advantage over other candidates who may have the right technical skills but not necessarily the cultural competencies expected of employers.