Even after traveling many countries of the world, teaching in China really made an impact on Dan, one of our Global Talent Specialists here at Career China. After living and teaching in Beijing for years, he now dedicates his time to helping others set out on their path in China. As a part of our "Meet our team" series, let's chat with Dan a little more to hear first hand from him about his experience in China and the advice he gives to new recruits. So...let's get on with it!
My Name is Dan, I’m 29 years old! I am from Leeds, England. I am currently based in Hoi An, Vietnam. I have previously lived in China, Egypt, Finland and of course England. From leaving college I went into hospitality; I did that for 5 years until meeting my now fiancée. She had travelled a bit before and passed the bug on to me!
I have taught and lived in Beijing, China for three and a half years. I started working in China as a referral from the company I was working for in Egypt. I was shocked upon arriving in China; I’d heard horror stories, mainly about the culture and the people. I soon found living in Beijing is not that different from any other city in the world (only all the signs are in characters). I believe if you’re based in a large city in China. The culture shock isn’t that bad.
We started working for the company our wage was 3500 RMB! (393 GBP, 508 USD). As well as the pathetic salary, the company wasn’t great! After 6 months of sharing meals and scrapping by we decided to look for something new. We were looking for a week and had already lined up 5/6 interviews. We choose to go with the company that could get us a working Z visa and never looked back we worked for them for 3 years. My partner and I both worked our way up through the company and into the management team.
The opportunities in China for westerners seem to be endless. As the Chinese economy grows and companies look to the west to grow and learn, the need for westerners increases.
The cost of living is incredibly cheap and I was able to send half of my wage home each month. I was lucky enough to be able to travel not just around China but also around Asia. This is partly due to the Chinese national holidays which seem to be every month. More than the great salaries and careers in China, there is a great Expat community, even in the smaller cities. I have made some great friends which I’ll have for life. As well as the locals I still speak with my Chinese friends weekly (even the waiter from my local restaurant)
It depends entirely on the candidate. At career China, we aren’t just recruiters that put people in to any random job we pride ourselves on Talent Acquisition, meaning we match potential candidates with positions throughout china. I like to get to know my candidates and see what they are looking to get from their experience not just in China but from Career China and how they want to develop themselves.
The biggest piece of advice I could give to a candidate is not to limit yourself. If you see a job you like the look of that’s great but trust the specialist you’re speaking with. If they feel you would fit well into a different position have confidence in them.
For the interview be confident when talking limit the amount of errs and umms.. If we’re speaking to you; we believe in you and want you to be with us in China.
Do it! But seriously the prospects in China are limitless. It’s a good place to grow and gain life experience in a rich culture with 5000 years of history. So if you are going to move to China you need to embrace this.
The best way to contact myself is through Linkedin (https://www.linkedin.com/in/daniel-agar-29b13013a/) but you can also get to me through, WeChat (Agar051), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/Agar051) and WhatsApp (18810152274).
I look forward to hearing from you and helping you on your journey to China!
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