Six surefire ways to further your career in France in 2020

Make 2020 the year that you take the next step in your international career with these six moves that will help you to rise the ranks in France (and beyond).

Six surefire ways to further your career in France in 2020
Photo: ESSEC

No matter how high up you were in your career ‘back home’, it can feel like you’re starting from scratch when you move to a new country. This is especially true in France, where the rigid job market can be tough to crack if you haven’t followed the traditional French career path.

That’s not to say you can’t quickly rise the ranks with a few tweaks to your CV and a couple of professional add-ons. The Local has partnered with prestigious Paris-based business school ESSEC to bring you the following essential tips for furthering your international career. 

Top up your professional qualifications

Few things top having studied at a school that the hiring manager recognises and admires. Seeing a qualification from a respected French institution on your CV can help you to stand out from other international job seekers.

ESSEC, which came seventh in the Financial Times European Business School rankings 2019, offers a range of full-time general and specialised MBAs and part-time Executive MBAs to help you unlock the next career level, whether you plan to stay in France or move elsewhere following your studies. 

Open Day at ESSEC. Photo: ESSEC

Head along to ESSEC’s Open Day in Paris on February 1st to speak with alumni and programme directors and find out what you can get out of the programme. It’s your chance to discuss your career objectives and find an MBA programme that helps you to meet them. 

If you can’t attend in person, you can always join the Digital Open Week in March where you’ll have the opportunity to ask questions in real-time during live webinar sessions. Click here to register for the Digital Open Week.

Learn French

This one really goes without saying, but did you know that French is also one of the world's most important business languages? So whether you plan on working in France for the foreseeable future or moving onto another country further down the line, you never know what doors speaking French can open for you. Better start learning to parler français

Whip your CV into shape in French and English

Photo: ESSEC

It’s common sense to write your CV in French if you’re applying for jobs in France but don’t archive your English CV just yet. Many international companies in France have HR teams based around the world and so you never know where your CV will end up once you fire it off. Cover yourself by submitting it in both languages and remember to keep it short — the French like concise CVs so stick to two pages, or one if you’re a junior. 

Whether you're applying for jobs in France or elsewhere in Europe, it's best practice to submit your CV in the local language (unless the job is solely in English). It's always a good idea to speak to a local recruiter to find out how CVs are typically presented in that country and format yours similarly. 

Highlight your education

Perhaps more so than in other countries, your educational achievements matter in France. Companies will scrutinise your studies and qualifications (and probably check up on them too, so don’t be tempted to tell any tall tales just because you’re abroad!). It may help to list the original degree or diploma result as well as the French equivalent. For example, a British 2:1 is the equivalent of a mention bien in French. 

An MBA from ESSEC will elevate your CV whether you plan to stay in France or relocate after your studies. The highly-ranked business school has an excellent reputation around the world that will instantly set you head and shoulders apart from other applicants. 

Build your profile

Get yourself on the radar of recruiters and companies by saving your CV on jobs boards or sharing it with hiring managers or recruitment agencies. But try not to hide behind the keyboard: put yourself out there and be bold, go out and meet people so they can put a face to a name.

Social networking site Meetup lists plenty of networking events where you can meet other English-speaking professionals. Get to know the places where other international residents congregate; often, you’ll find, they are keen to lend a helping hand to others in the same boat. Meetup is a global platform so is a handy resource wherever you decide to pursue your career; likewise, Facebook often has expat groups you can join to meet other international professionals.

Photo: ESSEC

Once you’re enrolled at ESSEC, you’ll have access to the business school’s extensive network of partner companies in Europe, so you can begin building your profile in and outside of France. There’s also a 60,000-strong global network of alumni who you can connect with for advice or to enhance your future career prospects.

Do your homework

Professional decorum differs everywhere and familiarising yourself with the way of operating in the country you hope to work in should be high up on your agenda. For example, interview etiquette is important and France has its own set of rules to remember such as not kissing the interviewer on the cheek and sticking with the formal vous if you’re speaking French, as well as referring to your interviewer/s as Madame or Monsieur until they invite you to do otherwise.

MBA participants at ESSEC can take advantage of personalised mentoring to help them understand the industry they want to enter as well as the market. The career services department supports participants to develop the skills to become stand-out candidates for world-class recruiters. It’s the cherry on top of a rigorous programme that will prime you to take the next step in your career, be it in France or beyond.

Business etiquette may differ but one thing doesn’t: MBA demand around the world is high. Click here to register to attend an Open Day at ESSEC or click here to register for the business school’s Digital Open Week.

This article was produced by The Local Creative Studio and sponsored by ESSEC.


Over one in ten children live in low-income households in Norway

The proportion of children who live in low-income households has increased steadily since 2011, rising to just over one-in-ten, according to a report from Statistics Norway.

Over one in ten children live in low-income households in Norway
Photo: Annie Spratt on Unsplash

The report found that there a total of 115,000 children belong to households in low-income groups. This is around 11 percent of all children in Norway.

“Studies show that people born into low-income families have in increased risk of being left behind in several areas of living, among other things, growing up in low-income shows a connection with negative health outcomes. It has been shown that young people’s mental health is affected by belonging to a low-income family,” the report states.

In its article on the data, Statistics Norway defines “persistent low income” households as having “under 60 percent of [national] median average [income] over three years”.

Children with an immigrant background have accounted for more than half the children from persistent low-income groups since 2013. This is despite only accounting for 18 percent of all children. Nearly 40 percent of children with immigrant backgrounds belong to low-income households, according to the Statistics Norway figures.

“This has a clear connection with the fact that households with a weak connection to the labour market are exposed to low income,” the report said.

Families with a Syrian background had the highest proportion of low-income households with almost nine-out-of-ten children coming from low-income families. Meanwhile, the largest group of children in number are those with a Somali background with over 11,000 of these children living in low-income households. Children with an Eritrean background saw the largest jump.

READ ALSO: Immigrants in Norway more likely to be affected by loneliness 

The report indicated that the reason behind these groups having large numbers of children belonging to low-income households was because the average number of people in the household with an occupation was less than one between 2017 and 2019.

Those with Lithuanian and Polish backgrounds saw decreases of children in low-income households. Children from these countries, as well as Sri Lanka, India and Bosnia-Herzegovina averaged 1.5 people employed in the household in the same period.  

Single parents are much more likely to be found in low-income groups, as are families with three or more children. 

The areas with the largest municipalities were most exposed to low income. Sarpsborg, in southern Norway, overtook Drammen as the municipality with the largest proportion of low-income children with 19.1 percent.