Leaving your IC career

Some people spend their whole working life in international cooperation, while others do it only for a limited time. Can they then return to their original job? Often it has changed in the preceding years, as may have the person.

Perhaps you are looking for a stable environment, the children are starting school or have to choose their career, your partner has prospects for a job in Switzerland or you have new ideas and dreams. There are many reasons to leave international cooperation.

This decision is sometimes preceded by a change in circumstances, such as moving back to Switzerland. Often it is involuntary: there are half as many jobs in international cooperation in Switzerland than there are abroad and the requirements for these positions are different to the profile of someone returning from the field.

Read the Labour Market Report 2013/2014

Confronting the challenges

Changing to a career outside international cooperation can be as difficult as entering it. Some of the challenges are similar: you must transfer your competencies to another area (or field). However, if the change is involuntary, saying goodbye can be very difficult and make the challenges of job-hunting even harder.

Many employers outside of IC do not understand the particular tasks and challenges of working abroad and can therefore draw wrong conclusions about a profile, for example a former delegate of the International Committee of the Red Cross ICRC.

Reinventing yourself

Perhaps your previous profession no longer exists. And what about specialists who have worked only in IC since graduating from their studies?

It can be very destabilising because it affects your individual sense of identity. In such situations, it helps to reflect on the competencies you have developed in IC while at the same time considering yourself divorced from it, and to integrate a new professional goal in your life.

Discover IC Panorama

What does international cooperation mean? In the panorama of the IC working world you will find definitions, actors and career examples.

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Do you have any questions or requests? We are gladly at your disposal.


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