You’ve moved from the UAE, and we’d love to hear your journey. Tell us about your experience and what prompted the move?
After 5 years in the UAE, which I enjoyed very much, I moved back to the UK as I felt that it was time to be with my elderly parents. Also, I had an established network back in the UK that I had built up over many years and was pleased to find that good connections always remain part of your ‘work family’. Transitioning back was very smooth and I was quickly engaged into a project based in the UK, but delivering technical and training solutions to Khazakstan.
Looking back what were your high and low points of your time in the UAE? What reflections can you share?
The high points were working amongst dedicated local and ex-pat professionals, all committed to delivering projects that were of value to their organisation. I made some lifelong friends too. Luckily I quickly discovered local business networking groups, which allowed me to quickly make contacts (and friends) to explore business and social opportunities.
The low points were navigating through the uncertain economic climate brought on the 2017 low oil price slump, meaning that organisations were wary about committing to projects whilst they watched the uncertain economy at the time.
What were the biggest changes you faced when you came to the UAE?
I was very lucky as I quickly met ex-pats who were willing to share their experiences and information about how to navigate through the red tape that a new country inevitably provides. The information regarding practical things like visas, driving licenses, accommodation were quickly provided by good hearted people who had all been through the same experiences.
If you had your time again what might you have done differently?
I believe that I would have built up my contacts from the UK first and collaborated with different projects and initiatives to get firm commitments before moving out there. At the time there was the luxury of travelling back and forth with no restrictions, so this could easily have been achieved. Now of course people are even more willing to meet and deliver via Zoom so the same can be achieved virtually, although you can never beat meeting people in person!