Loving life is easy when you are abroad. Where no one knows you and you hold life in your hands all alone, you are more master of yourself than at any other time.
Hannah Arendt
Indeed, moving abroad can have a strong influence on your life, in both a professional and personal way. You are not only educating yourself by interacting with a foreign culture, but also taking yourself out of your comfort zone, improving yourself thanks to your new and exciting challenge. 

Two young professionals who moved to Spain and now work in our Shared Service Center in Barcelona talk about their experiences with us and explain why moving abroad can change your life for the better!  

Sophia Brandt, Brazil, Communications Coordinator @ PageGroup

Sophia Brandt

Sophia, how come you made the decision to work abroad?

I had just graduated from University, and after living in the same place for almost 5 years, I decided it was time to try something new!

How has your professional experience been so far abroad?

I started with a trainee position, where I learned a lot. After 10 months I was promoted to a permanent position, and I am very happy with where I am now; I keep learning new things and expanding my knowledge and skills, and I have grown my personal and professional network a lot.

What do you like the most about living in Spain?

I was born and raised in Brazil, so some of the things I miss most about it are the warmth and openness of the people. I feel like Spain is a good middle ground between the quality of life and efficiency I like about Europe and the warm, welcoming people and atmosphere I know so well from Brazil. The beach, nice weather and rich culture are a great few extras!

How do you think this experience benefits your future life?

Living in a different country allows you to step out of your comfort zone, which is always a good way to learn new things, and get to know people from different backgrounds. I think it also affects your perception of new cultures, and helps you to accept and confront new challenges you may have in the future.

What would you recommend to expats, freshly arriving in Spain?

What are the first steps to do which help you integrating?

Take some time to learn the language, this way you’ll be more likely to have meaningful interactions with the locals, which will help you in many ways – looking for a flat, making new friends, etc. Don’t worry so much about getting everything done immediately, take your time to discover the city and enjoy!

Manini Gurtu, Germany, Media Specialist @ PageGroup

Manini Gurtu

Manini, why did you choose Spain and how has your professional experience been so far?

I was pretty open about what country to move to, however, I wanted to stay in Europe and live and study in a country where English is widely spoken but not the main language – so Spain seemed like the perfect choice – and it definitely was! After graduating from University I didn´t feel like moving back home as I would have been looking for a job there too, so I decided to stay and look for a job here as I was interested in Spanish working culture and gaining experience abroad.

I firstly thought that it might be difficult due to a potential language barrier or the economic situation, however, when I was looking for a position for a young professional I quickly found my current job at PageGroup SSC. I am learning a lot and I have the opportunity to work and English as well as in German (my mother tongue) which is just perfect for me. 

What do you like the most about living in Spain?

I really appreciate Spanish culture and of course the weather. As I have studied and worked I’ve built up an international network in a professional but also in a personal way. I really enjoy living with different cultures and people and I feel that Barcelona is just the perfect city if you enjoy this kind of environment.

What would you recommend to expats, freshly arriving in Spain?

What are the first steps to do which help you integrating?

PageGroup helps you a lot with the “professional” starting process like getting a NIE or Social Security number – things you might not be aware of when you are still in your home country. Bureaucratic things are much easier when you do them directly in Spain. Generally, it is always advisable to have some basics in Spanish to communicate with locals in your daily life. Taking language classes and moving in shared flats helps you to get to know more people who are in the same situation as you.

Would you like to try the living abroad experience just like Sophia and Manini have?

Check out our vacancies and join the Page family or another international SSC of your choice.