For those of you conducting an international job search and want to work abroad, I invite you to consider pursuing a portable career.
A portable career is a career that you can take with you wherever you go. It can gracefully move with you to a new city or new country - whether for several months or several years.
A portable career gives you more freedom to choose where you want to live and work, and helps you maintain a professional identity rather than starting over professionally every time you move somewhere new.
It also gives you more flexibility to organize your work to support an international lifestyle, and can actually help you work less so you can enjoy life overseas more.
There are many reasons for building a portable career.
You may live or desire to live in a country where:
Or you may want to travel and experience the world. You want the freedom that comes from doing location-independent work.
Historically there have been few careers that were both truly portable and provided a livable income. These careers have included teaching, nursing, childcare, or administrative support.
However, with today's advances in technology such as voice over IP programs like Skype, high-speed internet connections, and the ability to set up businesses and to market your services online, the list of portable career options is now much longer.
The list of jobs that can be made portable include: accountant, artist, web designer, computer programmer, online business manager, IT services, coaching, consulting, writer, journalist, publicist, teacher, import/exporter, social media strategist, trader, researcher, and event organizer.
As markets become more global and technology evolves, we are sure to not only see more portable career options available, but more people pursuing them to make their dream of an international, mobile lifestyle a reality.
But how does a portable career differ from a non-portable career?
There are a few key differences:
That said, organizations are becoming more and more global. Not only will many of the jobs of tomorrow be delivered or conducted virtually, but I believe changes in the marketplace will lead to more specialized virtual services.
Hence there will be more portable jobs as well as fewer jobs that could not be considered portable to some degree.
If you are conducting an international job search and have a true desire to work abroad, consider pursuing a portable career. A portable career can not only get you working overseas, but help keep you working abroad for the long-term.
About this author...
Megan Fitzgerald is an expat career and personal branding coach, CEO of Career By Choice, and your guide to the world of international careers. With two decades of experience supporting professionals and entrepreneurs in 40+ countries across 6 continents, Megan uses a 360°approach to help expats and international job seekers become highly visible, sought after, and land work abroad. You can read about expat careers at CareerbyChoiceBlog, and also find her on Twitter as @ExpatCoachMegan, on Facebook, and, of course, on LinkedIn.