In the words of Alicia Keys, New York City is the place dreams are made of. And for so aspiring professionals, myself included, we are willing to go anywhere to chase down a dream. Whether your ambition is to move into a swanky flat in the city or venture to the land Down Under, finding a job in your dream city is never easy. But when faced with those (seemingly) vast, job applications, you can see equally vast opportunities – and adventures. The hardest part about planning a big move is actually landing the job to make moving a reality. Here’s some tips on how to land a gig in your dream city:
Bucket list #1: Live in (insert dream city here)
Type “dream city” into Google, and you’ll be bombarded with thousands of search results. Forget everything you’ve seen on Pinterest: the sunsets, model poses with delectable eats, and creeper crowds of random people having fun in the streets. You might be down for any adventure, but it’s crucial to narrow it down to one or two of your dream cities to keep from breaking the bank.
Don’t get us wrong, we’d love to frolic along the beaches of Fiji or hit up sun, sand, and surf in Hawaii, but you need to find a winning combination. Hone in on looking for jobs in a couple cities that have both summer excursions and career advancement opportunities. If you find yourself not feeling the love, take time to regroup and come up with a new strategy. Coming up with a long-term plan with your dream city as the end goal is a good stepping stone for opening up your options.
Look into companies that have multiple offices with one being in your dream city. It may not be exactly how you want to kick off your wanderlust escape, but you’ll have the opportunity to transfer down the road.
Upon grazing the potential job landscape, one has to use their primal instincts and connect with the herd. No, we’re not asking you to run wild into the Outback with the dingoes. One of the first steps you should take when searching for jobs in your dream city is reaching out to everyone (we mean everyone) you know who is living in the location you’re looking to move to. Sort through your LinkedIn connections to see if you know anyone who lives in the area or sign up for Google Voice phone number with the local area code. You can also hit up your college alumni association, this is a great way to remain plugged in.
Knowing someone who can connect you with a company contact, or provide you with a local address to borrow for your resume can be what you need to get to the next tier before getting an interview.
Book a ticket and just leave
At the very beginning of the job-hunting process, start saving for a travel nest egg, this chunk of change is what’s going to help you get to the last checkpoint. Schedule a trip a few months before your ideal move date and request an interview from all your job leads during the window of time you’ll be in town. By reaching out to request an interview on a specific date you might be more likely to get a response in a timely manner. Also, use your trip to scout out places to live and find new companies you may not have found through your online search. You can use MeetUp to search for events going on in the area. Getting your feet on the ground can greatly increase your chances of getting a new job title.
Don’t forget the nitty gritty details
If you’re moving within your own country, you can skip this pesky part but if you’re looking for work in an international company – you’ll need to understand their rules. In Australia it’s pretty common to ask to be hosted but not every company offers this option. This is the time to fully understand your own skills and what you can offer this company that their own citizens can’t. Go ahead and brag, this is the time when the spotlights all on you – let your inner narcissist shine. If you’re not in a rush, get those extra certifications you’ve always said you’d take, take a leadership course and brush up on your negotiation skills – you’re going to need them.
Keep moving forward
If all things go according to plan and you’ve followed some of the previous tips, we can only hope you’re packing up your life along with some snazzy new desk accessories for your new digs in a matter of a couple months. If location has been a huge barrier in your search the next step might be to bite the bullet and make the move anyway. You can always keep your items in storage if needed. This is definitely the most costly option, but you’ll be in your dream city 24/7 making it that much easier to get that job.
Throughout the process of moving also make sure to be tracking your expenses and hold on to receipts. Your employer might offer to reimburse you or you could be eligible to deduct the move as a job-related expense on your taxes, which would be the cherry on top after landing a job in your dream city!
The journey to your dream city can at times have some nightmarish obstacles, but as long as you do proper planning and stay fiercely focused you’ll be well prepared for buying that one-way ticket.
By Leah Rise, an accomplished world traveller and wolfdog charmer. She lives and breathes the balance of Search + Social every day in her dream city of Sydney, Australia. After touring over 20 countries, Leah has established her home base with seoWorks leading and developing strategies for several global clients.