Global Outlook and Your Career

Can you have an isolationist view of your career, and would you want to? Whether or not you plan to seek employment outside your home country , you might find it valuable to explore the concepts of a global outlook and an isolationist view; then look at your career management from a different perspective.

According to Wikipedia, “isolationism is the policy or doctrine of isolating one’s country from the affairs of other nations by declining to enter into alliances, foreign economic commitments, foreign trade, international agreements, etc., seeking to devote the entire efforts of one’s country to its own advancement and remain at peace by avoiding foreign entanglements and responsibilities.”

You can’t afford to ignore what’s happening outside your current company if you want to minimize the likelihood of being sandbagged by a corporate catastrophe. By the same token, you can’t afford to pretend that what happens in other countries is no concern of yours.

At best, isolationism was an ineffective policy, even decades ago. It’s much worse than just ineffective today.

Be Globally Informed–It Can Boost Your Career

Natalie Jesionka has written an article for The Daily Muse, titled “Why Knowing about the World can Help Your Career.” She makes a case for the positive side of taking a world view in your career and presents 3 reasons to consider broadening your outlook:

  • Sit at the Table: We’ve all been there, caught in a conversation we feel left out of….But when it comes to global issues, sticking around to offer your insight and hear what others have to say can help you “sit at the table” for important conversations and position you as informed and knowledgeable among your colleagues. In particular, you want to be informed about how the events happening in another country impact your own work….Identifying the global connection can help you network, be taken seriously, and understand your company’s relationship to the world.
  • Understand Business Culture: No matter what field you’re in, it’s likely that you’ll find yourself traveling abroad for business or working with someone from another culture at some point. And in order to successfully conduct business, it’s important to know the basics of the country and what the culture values….When you are doing business at home or abroad, being globally aware will help you make the most of the opportunity—not to mention avoid some serious mishaps….
  • Acknowledge Your Relationship to the World: …What happens in the rest of the world is directly related to what happens here—especially in the professional environment….As you go through your work day, note [of] how many things you use come from another country—and you’ll find that our offices couldn’t function without the rest of the world. Then, make note of the people you talk to who originate from somewhere else. It’s much easier to communicate and connect when you have some background knowledge about the person’s origins to share or discuss. And it could mean the difference between winning over that business deal or promotion or not….”

Too Busy to Keep a Global Outlook in Your Career?

Yes, we’re all busy, and you might feel as if you’re busier than most people. Maybe you are, but even a small effort towards keeping a global outlook can position you for a more successful, sustainably profitable career than burying your head in the sand and hoping that ignoring the outside world will keep trouble from your door! To quote philosopher Carl Jung, “Nobody, as long as he moves about among the chaotic currents of life, is without trouble.”

Show yourself to be a business professional who stays on top of things–not just locally or nationally but globally–and I’ll bet you’ll find that your career progress and success is stronger as a result.

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