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Bigger cities don’t pay more – at least, not enough

I would scream this from the mountain top if I could. Big cities don’t necessarily pay more. Big cities don’t pay more! BIG CITIES DON’T PAY MORE (at least not enough more)!

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying you shouldn’t move to a big city. I love big cities. Before Memphis, I was living in the Los Angeles area. It was beautiful. Given the opportunity, I would do it all over again.

But, as you already know – money doesn’t go as far there. In California, my apartment cost about the same amount of money as an apartment in Tennessee. But, can you guess what was different? It was less than half the size of what I was used to. It had no air conditioning. It had no dishwasher. It had no private parking. And, it had no washing machine or dryer for my clothes.

That sounds like it must have been a real shack, right? Wrong. I lived in the same neighborhood where celebrities lived. I ran into a few during my time there, including Arnold Schwarzenegger and Maria Shriver (before their breakup), Hillary Swank, and Minnie Driver.

Let’s get this right. We’re not talking cheap – we’re talking different. When I lived in LA, my priorities were different. I have friends who still live in cities like LA and NYC. Some live in tiny apartments. Others have roommates well into their 30s and 40s. It’s not a big deal. It’s not bad. It’s just different.

But, what probably won’t happen when you move to a big city is this. The new company you’re interested to work for may pay you more. But, they won’t pay you that much more. They’re not going to pay you so much more that you’ll be able to have the same house in your new swanky city. You’re going to have to make choices – like whether or not you’re down for living in a smaller space.

Why is this? Why wouldn’t a company pay you an adjusted cost of living wage? If you take an internal move, they might – or they’ll get closer. But, if you’re going to work for a new company, it’s unlikely.

This is the thing. A big city like LA has lots and lots of people; 3.9 million to be exact. Many of those people are qualified to do the same job you’re qualified to do. Most likely, you will have more competition for your job than you do today in your smaller city. And, it’s a supply and demand job market. If you want to make $100K per year, but there’s someone else who already lives in the city (and is also qualified) that’s open to taking $85K, what incentive does the company have to pay you $100K?

It’s that whole “big fish, little pond” concept. And you know, sometimes it’s good to be a big fish. For example, a city like Memphis sometimes pays more for specialized talent than LA. Why is that? Because there are very few people in a city the size of Memphis who can fill a certain job. But, in LA, there are lots of people who can.

Now that I’ve said all this, let me say that it’s not impossible to make much more in a larger city. This is especially true if you’re jumping up the ladder so to speak.

But, just don’t assume that a big city will pay you much more. It’s not a given. And, for the most-part, that’s a myth. You may make more, but the question is – how much more? And, are you prepared to try living without air conditioning or without a dishwasher?

Of course, there’s no right answer. It’s all a very personal choice. Just be sure you understand the pond before you jump into it.

I hope these tips have helped you. Visit CopelandCoaching.com to find more tips to improve your job search. If I can be of assistance to you, don’t hesitate to reach out to me here.

Visit CopelandCoaching.com to find more tips to improve your job search. If I can be of assistance to you, don’t hesitate to reach out to me here.

Also, be sure to subscribe to my Copeland Coaching Podcast on iTunes or Stitcher where I discuss career advice every Tuesday! If you’ve already heard the podcast and enjoy it, please consider leaving a review in iTunes or Stitcher.

Happy hunting!

Angela Copeland
@CopelandCoach

 

Three tips for moving to another city

Have you ever thought of moving to another city? For many job seekers who are searching in a difficult market, I often recommend looking in other places. But, searching in one city while you live in another can be a challenge.

In a new city, chances are good that your professional network is weak. You won’t have the same number of friends you can call and ask for referrals. When you do get an interview, it can be hard to get to the company in person. The entire process can be frustrating, and can leave you wondering if you should just stay put.

If you’re interested to move to a new city, follow these three steps to find a new job. They’ll make the entire process easier and faster.

First, research all of the cities you’re interested in. Think about the qualities that matter to you. For example, you may want to live in a city with a certain size of population. Perhaps you want to be within driving distance of the mountains, the beach, or your aging parents. Cost of living may matter to you, or the quality of the nearby schools. Whatever qualities you select, create a spreadsheet where you can track how each city ranks. Narrow your list down to your top one to three cities.

Next, visit the city (or cities) you’re most interested in. But, don’t go as a tourist. Plan a business networking trip. Have lunch with friends in the area, and meet recruiters. Attend networking events, and job fairs. Look for any opportunity to build connections and learn more about the local market. Not only will your knowledge grow, but people will take your interest in their city more seriously if they meet you. You’ll transform from a printed name on a resume to a real person.

Last, save money for unexpected expenses. Although some industries pay their employees relocation, not all do. After you land a job in a new city, there’s a chance you may need to pay some or all of your relocation expenses. If you’re moving to a more expensive market, you may also need a little extra money to make the transition seamless. Start saving now.

Moving to a new city shouldn’t be taken lightly. Making the right move requires research, work, and time. And, it takes honesty. Very often, job seekers ask me whether or not it’s okay to use a friend’s address on their resume and job application. Don’t be lured into this trap. You will forfeit any potential relocation the company would have paid. And, you’ll have to make up a story about why you’re not available to come in for an interview on short notice. When the company realizes you’re being dishonest, it will put an automatic strain on the relationship.

If you are interested to move, take the time to save and plan. Your search will take time, and possibly money. But, you’ll secure an entirely new place for yourself and your future.

Angela Copeland is a Career Coach and Founder of Copeland Coaching and can be reached at CopelandCoaching.com or on Twitter at @CopelandCoach.

127 | Moving Abroad – Greg Taff, Norwegian Institute for Bioeconomy Research in Oslo, Norway

Episode 127 is live! This week, we talk with Greg Taff in Oslo, Norway.

Greg is a Research Scientist at the Norwegian Institute for Bioeconomy Research in Oslo, Norway. He conducts land use change research in northern areas, primarily in the Artic, great Scandinavia, and the Baltics. Greg’s specialties include GIS, remote sensing, and statistics.

On today’s episode, Greg shares his tips to moving abroad. He covers how to go about finding a job, the jobs easiest to land in other countries, and trips for your move. If you’ve dreamed of moving to another country, you need to hear this episode!

Listen and learn more! You can play the podcast here, or download it on iTunes or Stitcher.

To learn more about Greg’s work, check out the NIBIO website here: http://www.nibio.no/en.

Thanks to everyone for listening! And, thank you to those who sent me questions. You can send your questions to Angela@CopelandCoaching.com. You can also send me questions via Twitter. I’m @CopelandCoach. And, on Facebook, I am Copeland Coaching. Don’t forget to help me out. Subscribe on iTunes and leave me a review!

120 | Personal Brand Building – Jenny Hargrave, InterviewFit in Guildford, UK

Episode 120 is live! This week, we talk with Jenny Hargrave in Guildford, United Kingdom.

With over 15 years of experience, Jenny helps companies attract and retain sought-after talent in competitive sectors through her executive search firm. She also assists job seekers by helping them to develop a strong personal brand through their CV, professional profile, and face-to-fact interviews at her firm InterviewFit.

On today’s episode, Jenny shares her tips on how to build your personal brand, and how to prepare for a successful Skype interview. She also helps us to understand the concept of a ‘personal statement,’ and gives us tips for how to relocate from the U.S. to Europe for work.

Listen and learn more! You can play the podcast here, or download it on iTunes or Stitcher.

To learn more about Jenny and her company InterviewFit, check out her website at http://www.interviewfit.co.uk/.

Thanks to everyone for listening! And, thank you to those who sent me questions. You can send your questions to Angela@CopelandCoaching.com. You can also send me questions via Twitter. I’m @CopelandCoach. And, on Facebook, I am Copeland Coaching. Don’t forget to help me out. Subscribe on iTunes and leave me a review!

 

How to Make a Big Move Happen This Year

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With the summer finally here, you may be planning a fun vacation. That vacation to visit a far away, relaxing location can leave you dreaming of moving to a new place. The farther along you are in your career, the trickier moving can feel. At times, it’s hard to know where to even begin.

If you’re part of a unique profession where companies struggle to find candidates, you’re one of the lucky ones. Headhunters and company recruiters will seek you out. Companies will court you and offer to pay to move you and your entire family to their headquarters.

But, if you are not one of this select group, you may be struggling to figure out how to make a move. Organizations often want to recruit local talent first. And, it makes sense. Someone local doesn’t require relocation. They can often start sooner, and the recruiter can get references from other employers in the city about their work.

What can you do? First, don’t just apply online. I harp on this topic, but applying through the company website only will rarely land a job offer. This is especially true if that job is in another city.

Instead, consider this approach. Plan a trip to your target city. The trip could last anywhere from a few days to a week, but be sure to go on weekdays, when business offices are open. Stay away from big holiday weekends when employees are out of town.

Before you go, reach out to as many people as possible to setup meetings. Start with your existing network, including friends, family, and former colleagues. Then, contact local recruiters in your target city. Last, reach out to potential hiring managers are companies you’re interested in. You can find these people through websites like LinkedIn. When you reach out, mention that you will be in town only for a short time, but that you’d love the opportunity to take the person to coffee or lunch while you’re visiting.

Break each day into three parts: morning, midday, and evening. Try to schedule a coffee meeting in the morning and a lunch meeting midday for each day you visit. In the evenings, look for networking events to attend.

A great place to look for networking events is Meetup.com. You can search the website by the type of event you’re looking for in a particular location. You can also search the local Chamber of Commerce website, and other professional organizations that you may already be a member of.

For every meeting and event you attend, be sure to bring extra business cards and resumes. You never know when you might meet someone who’s looking to hire you. And, bring at least one suit, just in case you land an interview while you’re there.

This approach is much more in depth than applying online, however it is also much more effective. By meeting you in person, you become more than just a resume and you show potential employers that you’re serious about your move.

Angela Copeland is CEO and founder of Copeland Coaching and can be reached at CopelandCoaching.com or on Twitter at @CopelandCoach.

If you could move anywhere, where would you go?

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The thought of moving to a new city can be one of the most energizing and most scary thoughts. Especially once you’ve settled down in a place for a few years, how do you pick a new city? How do you decide where to go? And furthermore, how do you get there?

Here are a few tips on choosing and successfully moving to a new city:

  1. Start with a broad list of cities that seem interesting. Write the cities down that you come up with.
  2. Create a list of things that are important to you. When you pick a new city to move to, it’s often based on lifestyle choices. Your list might include things like the quality of the public schools, the cost of living, the crime rate, and more. Decide what’s the most important to you and look up the stats for each city. You can find these things on the Census Bureau website, or on local government sites.
  3. Narrow your list of cities and start visiting them. Nothing can help you to decide where to move, and where NOT to move than by visiting the cities on your list. But, don’t make the mistake of being a tourist. Stay at a place you find on AirBnB.com, so you’ll live with the locals. Go to local events that you would attend if you were back home. Try things like networking events, yoga classes, dance lessons, or cooking classes.
  4. Once you have decided on a target city, research the companies there. Create a list of the companies you want to target.
  5. Now that you have your target list of companies, go again. But, this time, setup networking meetings with local hiring managers. Even if you don’t know them personally, reach out on LinkedIn. Explain that you’ll only be in town for a week, but that you’d love to take them out for a coffee to learn more about their business. Not everyone will respond, but those who do have the potential to turn into real connections.

Moving can be tough. Above all, don’t apply online and expect for things to just work out. If you’re not local, you’re not known. Companies prefer to hire local candidates if they can. They can find them through their existing network, they don’t have to pay relocation, and the candidate can start working sooner.

And, speaking of relocation — Decide how important paid relocation is to you. If you don’t want relocation costs to make or break an offer, start saving now. Get a quote from a local moving company so that you’ll have an idea of what to expect.

Going in person can set you apart from other candidates. It can make you more than just a resume. It can sometimes be just enough to get the hiring manager to hire you before they hire someone else.

And, one last note: If it’s your dream to move abroad, learn the rules. Different countries are easier or harder to immigrate to. They may have rules about the kind of work you can do, the age you must be, etc. From my experience, it seems to be easier to relocate from the U.S. to Australia than to Europe, for example — but, only if you are under a certain age.

Bottom line: Do your homework and take the extra steps you need to in order to turn your moving dream into a reality.

I hope these tips have helped you. Visit CopelandCoaching.com to find more tips to improve your job search. If I can be of assistance to you, don’t hesitate to reach out to me here.

Also, be sure to subscribe to my Copeland Coaching Podcast on iTunes or Stitcher where I discuss career advice every Tuesday! If you’ve already heard the podcast and enjoy it, please consider leaving a review in iTunes or Stitcher.

Happy hunting!

Angela Copeland
@CopelandCoach