How Could Brexit Influence Your Career?

Jan 23, 2017 at 12:00am ET By Alyssa Walker

Brexit’s consequences for global business will reverberate beyond the UK’s borders, causing new business graduates potentially to shift their attentions away from London—long considered a global business hub.  If you’re a new business grad where will you seek employment?  If you’re an international professor, where might you choose to go?  How might Brexit affect decisions about your career?  Here are four ideas to consider as you catapult yourself into the world—and into business.

 

1. International Location

One of the biggest factors that shape our decisions?  Risk.  As business graduates, you are no different—most of you want to work right out of the gates, with energy and gusto.  Where do you go?  In Europe, the MBA go-to has long been London.  Now that the UK has plans to leave the EU, you may choose to go to London and stake your claim—or you may choose an emerging alternative.  As a newly minted MBA grad, you may opt to beat the rush and go where you know companies want to hire professional international talent.  Do your homework and chances are, you’ll find a desirable place where you can do the work you love—and showcase your talent.  

 

2. Increased Uncertainty

You don’t know what you don’t know.  Hard to make plans, isn’t it?  Brexit adds a sharp edge to your sense of uncertainty—you don’t know what the business scene will look like in the UK, let alone a thousand other things, like student loans.  All you know is that you have to pay them back.  You don’t know how “protected” your job will be in the EU or the UK, or what kind of salary you can expect, or what Brexit will mean for UK residents who want to work in the EU.  Where does this leave you?  While you may feel concerned about your job prospects in a post-Brexit UK, rest assured that as an MBA grad, you have the skills and abilities to assess situations and make thoughtful decisions.  Pay attention to the news and to world markets.  Remember: if a job sounds too good to be true, it probably is. 

 

3. Visa Processes

While the UK has guaranteed international students a smooth transition for this year, there’s no guarantee for any international students from the EU or anywhere else post-Brexit. With uncertainty for a global applicant base or international faculty, you should consider the ease with which you can obtain a study or work visa when you decide to where to study—and potentially where to work.  Luckily, there are many open and welcoming markets for business schools, and while the UK may continue to have relatively easy processes for international students and professionals, you don’t need to count on it.  (See #2). 

 

4. Unanticipated Field

When you consider all of your options, you’ll find that you have numerous fields from which to choose, regardless of Brexit’s impact.  As an MBA student, graduate, or professor, instead of focusing on employment in business, banking, or finance, why not consider a career where you can apply your business know-how in promising market?  Consider fields that require individuals who know how to innovate, think critically, negotiate, navigate a corporate world, and position different kinds of companies and organizations for success.  Some possibilities that anticipate growth in the UK, and the EU?  Engineering and manufacturing. Healthcare. Leisure and hospitality. Public services.  Teaching.  Education.

Here’s a certain thing to consider as you weigh all of these variables: you are here in this world.  You have skills and abilities that companies and organizations want and need.  You know how to think outside the box.  Isn’t it time to apply those skills?  Go forth.  Be smart.  Think, then act.  Be resilient.  Chin up.  You can do it.

 

 

Alyssa Walker is a freelance writer, educator, and nonprofit consultant. She lives in the White Mountains of New Hampshire with her family.

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