Return to Hong Kong strategy

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  1. #1

    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    San Francisco, CA
    Posts
    2

    Exclamation Return to Hong Kong strategy

    Hello,
    I worked in HK at the new airport in 1996-1997 during it's construction phase. I've always planned on returning to HK and 2006 is going to be the year! However, my current employer doesn't have work for me in HK so I have to find a way back in the country. It appears that getting TESL/TEFL certified and coming over to teach ESL is a good way to get back in the country, although this would be a major pay cut. It appears that jobs I'm qualified for require local language skills, which I do not currently possess.

    My return strategy which I'd like you to critique is:

    1. Get TESL certified in U.S. and secure a teaching position in HK that includes Airfare and Accomodations.
    2 Once in HK, network with expats to secure another position more in tune with my skills (customer training/professional services/technical support/vendor management)
    3. Learn Cantonese and/or Mandarin in order to be more marketable

    Thank you!


  2. #2

    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    107

    Hi Snookman,
    I see you are from SF. I am not too far from you; only 55 miles south from the City. I am an expat of HK but I go back every couple of years because I still love this “P{earl of the Orient”.
    May I asked what exactly your function was with the HK Airport project ? I understand during the building of the airport, a lot of special skills are technologies were needed and people were flocking to HK to work for most people were hired on with Expat incentives and allowance. Although many people from all over the world are still going to HK for employment, the packages and incentives are not what they were. I guess, like you said, you can work as an ESL teacher which by HK standard I understand it’s a pretty well-paid profession but you still need to go through the proceeding to be certified. I take it that you are not of Chinese origin and you don’t speak Cantonese nor Putongua which is a disadvantage. I guess people from US with a special skill could do better than just surviving because of the “grass is always greener in someone else’s yard” mentality. HK seems like it has always offered better opportunities to foreigners than locals with the sample qualification for the same position in general. Good luck to you!


  3. #3

    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    San Francisco, CA
    Posts
    2

    Goodman:
    I worked for Raytheon at CLK training the Airport Authority on how to operate/maintain the airport's ATM network. My background specifically is Aerospace/Telecom, but more generally it's Training and Professional Services. I'm a US citizen who doesn't speak any foreign languages (What you call a person who only speaks one language? Answer: An American) Thank you for your post!


  4. #4

    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    107

    Don’t feel bad. When I arrived in the US at 16, I barely managed the 26 alphbets (it’s 26; isn’t it ?) J

    But I scrambled for the next few years to learn English because I didn’t want to spend the rest of my life working in Chinatown as waiters or grocery clerk; although I was working at night as a waiter for a few years while I was going to school. Then I enrolled in Heald’s College for electronics that was the beginning of my career. It has been good to me but a lot of my colleagues were not so fortunate. Many were laid off from 2 years ago and still unable to land a perm. position. Back in 1998-2000, the tech boom created many jobs with unreal salaries which vanished quickly after the tech bust. People who were living it up during the boom time found hard ground after 2000. That’s just the sign of the time. Anyway, Putongqua is not that hard for American (or English speaking people for that matter) to learn because the sounds can be phonically noted.