Professional Fulfillment Through Travel? It Could Happen

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By Ryan Velez

It’s often easy to try and do the right thing in your career without necessarily getting the feeling of fulfillment you are looking for. Maybe by all accounts, you’ve created a winning resume, but find that this is all being done due to someone else’s standards of success. A recent Black Enterprise blog post suggests that travel, not for pleasure, but for business, may be exactly what you mean. You’ve probably heard that travel can be a revitalizing tool a number of times, but not necessarily for your career. As things turn out, it may just be what you’re looking for.

One reason that traveling and working in another country can do wonders for your career is for the boost it provides in your confidence. Even if it’s not your personal story, you may have heard of someone stuck in a dead-end job because they’re afraid of not being able to get anything better. The issue here is a lack of confidence, and travel is perhaps one of the best ways to get over this hump. Once you’ve navigated an environment where you are clearly an outsider, sometimes not even able to speak the native language, the fears that have kept you bound in that old job will seem like nothing, and you will be bold enough to make the career moves you deserve.        

If this idea seems a bit too holistic of a reason for you, there are also far more concrete benefits to traveling for your career. The same skills that you needed to learn and develop to increase your confidence will also increase your earning potential. Think about it. In some cases, you may need to learn another language, give consulting expertise from your field to areas where it is in demand, learn the social media strategies for another culture, and perhaps even present some of your knowledge in a formal setting. All of these activities lead to a more diverse skill-set, and when you come back home, that broader skillset lets you negotiate higher salaries when the time comes to step up to the table.

In addition, worldly traveling expands your networking list and the amount of people you can connect to. The sheer volume of new professionals you can meet in another country that you would have no chance to meet otherwise can be its own reward. Yes, your education is the starting point for your career, but it is your network that will get you to that next stage of opportunity. If you find yourself in that rut or simply want to test your limits, make your six-month travel plan now and see

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