Thursday, November 12, 2009

overwhelmed at first

I was about to start off yesterday's blog post with something to address your concerns about how I've been doing on the job front back here. Then while comparing the situation between Malaysia and Japan, it veered to a subtopic on recycling.

Soon enough, it became a topic of its own, and I decided to delete the first sentence. And write it afresh here.

The job market back here is definitely better than in Tokyo. Not surprising. But what I did not expect was the response I got. Quite overwhelming in the beginning, I must say.

I did mention that I had 7 interviews the first couple of weeks I was back, some arranged back in Tokyo, the rest quickly came up when some friends knew I was around and introduced openings they knew. Till now, I've had an average of about 2 interviews per week, some from the same companies. That is really something compared to the 1 per month in Tokyo that was almost impossible to get. Most were very positive, I'd even go as far as say a third of those companies I talked to translated to offers.

I've never felt so "wanted" before LOL!

It was really quite amusing sometimes that various companies were willing to get me on board, despite the incompatibility in terms of work experience.

Like this MNC dealing with chemicals which was looking for an accounts payable analyst. It was introduced by a recruiter who specialised in Japanese-related positions. They didn't mind that I had totally no experience at all in that department, but because I spoke the language invited me over. I went for the interview nevertheless.

After the written and verbal Japanese tests, the interviewers talked to me about the job, and finally said in a very careful tone, "To be honest, I don't see you working here. From what I can see, your personality may not suit the work, as this will be quite routine and boring for you..."

To their surprise, I answered, "Yea, you're right! I don't see myself working here either. To be honest, I came here also to see if there are other opportunities which may be more suitable to what I am looking for."

Relieved that I was not disappointed, they replied, "Fair enough, we will keep that in mind."

I then politely requested that they forward my resume to HR and keep me updated if that happened. And so I thought that was the end of it.

Later that afternoon, the recruiter called me saying, "Guess what? Good news, X Company is keen on hiring you!"

(0.o) I thought we had an understanding earlier?!

So yes, opportunities are aplenty here. Recession has/did not really hit Malaysia, and job market is definitely much better.

If I was a fresh grad, I might have considered taking up that offer. They were willing to provide training for the job. I guess Japanese speakers are not that easy to find here.

After going through that a bit, it makes me wonder, perhaps I should have just studied Japanese instead of taking up my Masters! Apparently, a Masters degree is not highly valued here, and having an extra language will only come in handy when it's called for. Having both doesn't seem to make a difference in the compensation. Especially in smaller and local companies.

But that is how things are here. I shall have to be content with the fact that the life experiences gained from my time abroad are worth far more than what monetary ones will be, for they are priceless.

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