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  • Writer's pictureGrace Ge

The perfect time for your next job opportunity?

Hey friends,

Are you ready for the September job opportunities?

After the super quiet summer holiday, it's wonderful to see that more vacancies got released in the Dutch Labour Market.

If you ever want to change your job or just want to know your value in the Dutch Labour Market, this is your chance!

Let me share two stories that I hope will help your journey.

You only need 1 job offer One day, I had a free career coaching session with Sofia. She is smart, energetic, and committed. But, in the middle of our session, she started to cry and she apologized to me for her tears. “I know I’m not good enough, but I really like that job and I can do it.” “I sent emails and called HR, but I didn’t get any response from him. I just want to know why he did not choose me.” Is that true? That Sofia was not good enough? I doubt it. Sofia was not the first one who cried during the free coaching session. That is one thing I heard the most when people come to consult me is, how much they struggled with all the rejections, or ghosted applications from headhunters, recruiters, and HRs. I totally understand their feeling. It feels very bad. The hundreds of rejections or no replies made them not confident about themselves, low-self esteem, and even lost their motivation to keep on in their job-search journey. That’s why I told all my coachees in the very beginning, there is one thing I’m sure will happen that is getting rejection letters or being ghosted. When I was still a sales, one thing I learned the hard way is “Expectation Management”. But it is not just for a salesperson, it is for everyone who wants to get his/her dream job in the Netherlands. I recently read a post from a job seeker. He took a look back at his entire job search journey and visualized it as above. 2 job offers out of 103 job applications. That means he got around 100 rejections. Or he got ignored. He must be a strong man to digest all his emotions and move on! That’s why I work with my coachees to make a plan upfront. We apply to 10-20 jobs together with the expectation that we will have some rejections. But, that’s ok! In the end, you only need ONE job offer!

My story of “White Rice with Cup a Soup” In the last semester of my bachelor's study in the Netherlands in 2010, I needed to have an internship to complete my Graduation Assignment (GA). One of my friends was doing her internship in Lagaay Group B.V. (Lagaay International back in 2010) and she introduced me to an interview for the intern position in the purchasing department. Luckily, I got the internship very quickly and soon found a room in Schiedam. The working hours were from 8:00 to 16:30. So I still had enough time to write my GA thesis when I got back home every day. In 2010, the full-time internship “salary” was between 500-800 Euro per month in the Dutch labour market. I had 500 per month which was not enough to cover my survival. I had no choice but to get another part time job in a restaurant during weekend peak hours. At the same time, I needed to keep my living cost as low as possible. I guess I was quite “smart” in some ways. Soon I found a type of white rice that only cost 1/3 of normal rice in Amazing Oriental. Then I had to become creative in my cooking style. Rice with soya sauce, rice with chili sauce, in the end I found rice with cup a soup. Yes, white rice with cup a soup. Every day I brought a bowl of white rice with me to work (internship), then during lunch time I just put a warm cup a soup into my rice. That was my warm lunch during my internship. Saturday’s open market was also my favorite place to get some fresh vegetables and fruit. I was quite proud of myself that my “creative” way of living kept my grocery within 50 euro per month. While it worked for a little while, it was not sustainable. I needed to get myself out of this situation fast! A job offer was my way out. It was my escape. The combination of full-time internship, graduation assignment thesis, and a weekend part-time job did not leave me much time and energy. I didn’t speak Dutch. I didn’t have a large network. I didn’t graduate from top universities. It wasn’t easy, but I figured a way out. I had to learn it. Right now, living in the year of 2022 when I look back to those days it feels unreal. But it happened. It shaped me into who am I and helped to build my resilience. Without this experience, I might never be able to really understand what it means to survive in the Netherlands.

Warm wishes,



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