Traveling is a new form of education. You learn a complete different skill set while traveling than you would from a textbook. Travel builds character and educates us naturally by doing and experiencing ourselves. You can’t teach appreciation of the world, you can’t teach a sense of wanderlust, but travel definitely does.
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However, when recruiters see those gaps, they can’t help think, “tisk tisk, they must just not be ready to work.” They see unemployment, no ambition, and a whole lot of partying and drinking (well, at least my mom thinks so) but it’s time these misconceptions behind us because companies will be losing the best future employers.
This is why travelers make the best candidate:
1. We like to try new things
Ever tried grasshopper? Or sleeping in a tent? Or, even living outside of your home country? Obviously, these aren’t work experiences people encounter everyday, but ultimately, travelers like to push their boundaries and explore the new. Whether it’s a new software program, excel formula, or a company restructure, travelers will always try something new at least once, take the experience and make it our own.
Have you ever been to Asia or South America? “My friend, we have good price for you.” Ok, right. Don’t let that fool you because we know how to haggle for almost everything. We find the item we want, we are set on our price and we know how we will get it. In other words, we can negotiate with other businesses pretty well. If we have a goal in mind such as a future partnership or a new deal, we will negotiate the heck out of it until we get what we want for the price we want. Thanks, Asia.
3. We know how to budget and spend money wisely
Journeyed candidates know how to stretch a dollar. We can make a whole lot with just a little. Making budget reports and staying within budget is second nature to us. How much travel can we get out of X amount? We can do the same with your business. Try us.
4. We are risk takers
As travelers, we are faced with stressful and uncomfortable situations that force us to push ourselves out of our comfort zones. But we are willing to overcome our fears of the unknown and explore it. We jump off cliffs, eat mystery meat in Asia, ride in tuk tuks, and hey, even cross the streets in Vietnam. So a bit of a business risk is nothing to fear, but rather embrace. And hey, the best experiences happen outside of our comfort zones and so do the greatest successes.
5. We adapt to change
As travelers, we thrive on change. We travel from destination to destination, use all types of currencies, adjust to new time zones, and are constantly changing our environments. Basically, we find our feet easily. We are much more open to change and can adjust with no trouble in regards to reorganization and management alterations a lot better compared to those who don’t venture out.
6. We are cultural thinkers
Travelers will know how to deal with people from all types of different cultures and backgrounds. With such an interconnected world, this will become more and more essential while working. We know how to communicate with people from other cultures, respect customs and traditions different to our own, and we are able to accommodate to other countries which is essential to good networking.
7. We can say “thank you” in many languages
Businesses often work with other countries that don’t always speak English. A traveler loves to pick up languages (or pieces) from the countries they’ve traveled to and it is much appreciated when dealing with international clients. We are invaluable for communication at trade shows, conferences and networking events. You don’t know how far a simple “M’goi” (thank you in Cantonese) goes when speaking to fellow Chinese businessmen. We aren’t fluent but it shows we are trying to accommodate them and that we care.
8. We have excellent communication skills
Not only are travelers willing to learn a few words in another language, but we have to talk to locals to see the best of the city. We talk to the travelers in our hostels to hang out or do a tour. We love to get to know other people and travel together. We aren’t afraid of conversation, we can make a good chat out of anything, we connect to people on a deeper level and we love to hear different opinions. We are globalized citizens. That, my friend, makes a great salesman.
9. We are quick to make decisions
Frequent travelers have to make decisions all the time while they are on the go. Things go wrong, the meet new people, places are sold out. Travelers need to think fast for what’s next. They have to weigh up the pros and cons of transportation, accommodation, and assessing risks. We travel for a limited time, so to maximize both time and money, we become efficient decision makers.
10. We are willing to learn
Travelers have a dire need to learn about the world around them. We want to learn more about new cultures, customs, and traditions. We travel to learn about this big world, about ourselves and about other people. We adapt the same mentality in the workforce. We always want to learn to make a bigger and better “me”.
11. We are good at problem solving
Missing flights, delayed busses, lost suitcases? We have all been there, but travelers know how to keep their cool when something goes wrong. In event planning, something always happens (seriously, no event goes perfectly), but it is the way we manage the issue and solve the problem that matters in the end. It’s like they say, “It’s not about the destination, it’s about how you get there.”
12. We are fantastic story tellers
Graduates leave their school of partying, college bubble, and alas, find a job. They went to school, they played sports, and maybe won a championship or two. But travelers leave the home of their comforts, explore beyond their social circles, and see this great big world. Travelers have great stories, many interests, and can keep you wanderlusting for days. Trust me, ask me about how I got this scar on my face, or how I learned to cook Vietnamese food, or how I bathed an elephant.
13. We are dreamers
Travelers see the beauty in things that aren’t so beautiful. They are able to see the world in a different way. It’s not ordinary, it’s magical. Therefore, when we work, we want to make our workspace our new world while bringing value and culture to the workspace. We got this.
14. We are a new generation
We are the millennials. We are shaking things up, taking long gap years, learning the new and upcoming social media trends, always looking for a new exciting adventure to snapchat and have a closet full of participation trophies. Ya, I got a few.