England! Where the tea flows freely and an American (obviously) is a duchess! You have the option of Greggs or Nandos, free medical, and my favorite, naturally, a diverse group of people looking for jobs!
When I joined SALT two years ago, I swooned over the idea of the potential of relocating to London. It was a very distant dream, but not one that I wasn’t willing to fight for. Fast forward to September 2018, I packed up everything I owned (in 8 suitcases – I was impressed) and boarded the plane to London alone. I had never been more terrified and excited at the same time.
I was moving to a country I’d been to once before, and my only memory was getting stuck in a phone booth at the age of four, this has somehow happened again. It was time for me to trade Times Square for Piccadilly Circus, and “I’m sorry if that sounds selfish sweetie, but it's me! Me! Me! Me!” (Newly obsessed with AbFab, Soz).
Every phone call starts with the weather, ends with a high pitched “cheers” and results in a passive “take a look and we can connect tomorrow”.
Work Life and Culture
I think this was the biggest shock for me. I went from a small WeWork office of 15 people where after work activities involved a SoulCycle class or going home to make dinner…to 90 people in an office, happy hour, and “chat” to last you a lifetime. The office is constantly buzzing, there is always someone who fancies a pint, and people actually take an hour lunch.
CV vs. Resume
I love this one. It’s actually funny how using the word CV vs. Resume can make such a difference. When I started throwing the word resume around in the UK, they thought it was just hilarious!
CV: Curriculum vitae’, which in Latin means ‘(the) course of (my) life’.Typically, a CV is a longer version of your resume, giving an in-depth understanding of your entire career, over several pages.
Resume: French for ‘a summary’. This is a concise document, short and sweet, one page long, giving a general picture of your experience and your hard skills.
It's essentially the same thing people, let’s not overcomplicate it. *eye roll*
Openness for a chat
I have found people in London are certainly more friendly and polite than New Yorkers – go figure. I have also found that people in America are way more open to having a chat about a potential new role over $2K, verse all the “no thank you’s” I receive in London. Is it a simple case of people in the UK being happier with their jobs and aren’t as caught up with money and their next career break? One will never know!
Interview process times
The interview processes in the UK will typically take much longer. Is it because less people want to leave their jobs or is it because companies aren’t putting the same emphasis and urgency on their recruitment? Again, one will never know!
Let me walk you through it.
U.S: Take a brief on a job and qualify this all on the same day, source talent, engage with some great people, send 3 CV’s, 2 great interviews and 1 offer and acceptance….2 weeks – a future created!
UK: Explore an opportunity, qualify the job. Source and talk to great talent – lots more conversations to find and entice that willing amazing candidate, CVs sent, 2 weeks later, 3 interviews, 1 week later, second-round interview and more…
Do you see where I’m going here?
Despite all the pep talks, late night googling, endless “it’ll be a culture shock” chat, nothing could really prepare me for the world of English recruitment! It’s a learning process, and while it definitely takes a lot of patience, hard work (I’m a walking cliché), and occasional bathroom; I mean toilet, cries, I would never regret my move across the pond.