Archive for April, 2009

Expat Skills: How To Find Clarity And Direction

Posted on 29. Apr, 2009 by in Blog, Tools & Resources

As an expat, you need to constantly wrap your head around a huge amount of new information, especially right after moving to a new location. Everywhere you look, there is something unfamiliar or even downright puzzling to observe, process and learn.

In this context, the ability to keep your focus and stay on course becomes an essential survival skill.

How do you find clarity and direction when your brain is in constant overdrive?


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Expat Support: A Bit Of Background

Posted on 27. Apr, 2009 by in Announcements, Blog, Tools & Resources

After finishing the previous series of posts about expat support, what it is and how it works, I realised that I had left out an important piece of information: what makes me qualified to help you. Credentials. Life experience. Why I am good at what I do. That kind of things.

So I suppose this is going to be the blogging equivalent of an “About Me” page. I’ll try to keep this short not make it too long. But mostly this is me thinking out loud about why I got into expat support to begin with.

In other words: Why should anyone listen to me?


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Expat Support: How It Works

Posted on 24. Apr, 2009 by in Announcements, Blog, Tools & Resources

Now you know what expat support is all about and how it can benefit you. While that gives you an understanding of how it works in theory, you may still have some questions about the process itself.

I don’t know about you, but when I am about to hire someone for the first time, be it a financial advisor or a graphic designer, I like to know what the next steps are going to be. Clarity is important to me, so I like to know ahead of time what our working relationship is going to look like.

With this in mind, today’s post is:

Part III: What Happens When You Hire Me

Here is a step-by-step outline of what the expat support process looks like:


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Expat Support: Benefits And Results

Posted on 22. Apr, 2009 by in Announcements, Blog, Tools & Resources

In the last post, we talked about what expat support is and who it is meant for. Now let’s take a look at what it can do for you. After all, if you are going to hire someone to do this kind of work, you want to make sure that you are going to get results, right?

Part II: The benefits of expat support

1. Connection and Understanding
2. Support, Feedback, Brainstorming and More…
3. Accountability
4. Quality Listening
5. A Custom-Tailored Approach


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Expat Support, Or: What It Is That I Do

Posted on 20. Apr, 2009 by in Announcements, Blog

A number of readers who found this blog through Google or via Twitter have emailed me with questions about the type of work I do with expats.

You can find out more about my services on my Winning Away website. For those of you who are interested in the idea-behind-the-company, I thought I would also post a bit of information here on the blog.

My work is one of my passions and I could talk about it all day. Likewise, this post could easily turn into a novel, so I will break it up into three parts:

I. What I do and who it is meant for
II. What kind of results my clients get
III. What happens when you hire me, a.k.a. the process


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The Expat Life: How Do You Apply The 80/20 Rule?

Posted on 18. Apr, 2009 by in Blog, Expat Life, Tools & Resources

While browsing the web earlier today, I stumbled upon this article on The 80/20 Rule to Successful Expat Living.

I am always interested in tips to make life abroad more successful. In this case, I was also intrigued by the reference to the 80/20 rule – I studied business management when I was younger, and you can bet that I had this rule beaten into me in my marketing classes: 80% of your revenue comes from 20% of your clients, you make 80% of your sales with 20% of your products, and so on and so forth.

So how does this rule apply to expat living?


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New Expat Communities: And

Posted on 16. Apr, 2009 by in Blog, Expat Life, Tools & Resources

Among all the new expat websites that seem to launch on an almost daily basis, I recently found two (via Twitter) that look particularly promising: and

Their tagline: Inspiring Expatriatism
Best for: Soon-to-be and first-time expats
Best features:
– In-depth articles alternate with guest posts and lists of expat-oriented links
– A refreshingly straightforward style with a direct, engaging writing voice
– The focus is on creating community: expat spotlights, guest posts and comments are welcome and encouraged
How you can get involved:
– Fill in an Expat Spotlight questionnaire and get your profile featured on the site
– Write an article (yours truly recently contributed a guest post on 6 Reasons to Hire an Expat Coach)
– Follow @expatify on Twitter

Their tagline: Are You Expatacular?
Best for: Social media fans who love to share every aspect of their expat experiences
Best features:
– Highly interactive: features instant messaging, private messaging, blog comments and group discussions
– The Facebook-type interface and a myriad applications allow you to share photos, videos and events
– Groups for every part of the world, including off-the-beaten-track locations
How you can get involved:
– Set up a profile and start connecting with other expats
– Contribute articles or blog posts
– Follow @expatacular on Twitter

Happy online socializing!


On a completely unrelated note, I wanted to give fellow Canadians one last heads-up:

The new Canadian citizenship rules come into effect tomorrow, April 17th.

Here is my previous post on these Changes to the Canadian Citizenship Rules and their consequences for you. See also this Muchmor Canada Magazine article for a thorough summary of the new rules.


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New LinkedIn Group: Expatriate Writers And Journalists

Posted on 14. Apr, 2009 by in Blog, Tools & Resources

Are you an expat writer or journalist? Author Robin Pascoe has created a group specifically for you on Group for Expatriate Writers and Journalists.

Through this group, Robin is trying to create a hub where editors can post writing assignments and where expat writers can network, ask questions and support each other. You can read the full announcement on her blog.

LinkedIn has a number of interesting groups for expats. Not only do some of the groups work as mini message boards where you can start or join discussions, you also gain access to your fellow group members as a part of your extended network. This means that you can ask questions of them in the Q&A, a feature that I have always felt is one of LinkedIn’s great strengths.

I am a member of the Expat Network group (managed by and I have recently applied to join the Expat and Expat Lifestyle groups – come by and say hi next time you are on LinkedIn!


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The Expat Life: Why Twitter Is An Expat’s Best Friend

Posted on 11. Apr, 2009 by in Blog, Expat Life, Tools & Resources

The more I use Twitter, the more I love it. Actually, I think I am turning into a Twitter evangelist – it has become so useful to me that I want to encourage everyone to give it a try!

It is a particularly powerful tool for us expats. Away from our friends and family, we are always on the lookout for new ways to stay in touch.

Whether newcomers or old hands in our host country, we also love to feel connected to a larger community of like-minded expats – as evidenced by the mind-boggling number of expat blogs and expat online message boards.

So what makes Twitter different and better than your usual forum, blog or instant messenger?


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Top 6 F.A.Q. (Frequently Annoying Questions) Expats Get Asked

Posted on 09. Apr, 2009 by in Blog, Expat Life

As an expat, you probably find yourself answering the same questions over and over again, every time you meet a new person.

Now I do not have anything against making small talk and I actually quite enjoy talking to people who are curious about my background or my travels.

You do have to admit, though, that some of these questions get old pretty quickly. The annoyance factor is particularly high when your interlocutor starts assuming a bunch of stuff, or is trying very hard to make you fit into a neat little category- a perilous exercise with many expats!

Here are the 6 Frequently Annoying Questions (or is that Annoyingly Frequent?) that I get asked most often as a French expat in Canada:

1. So where are you from, anyway?
2. But what are you doing here?
3. You moved here because you fell in love, right?
4. Is your husband French, or Canadian?
5. So you didn’t like it in France?
6. Don’t you miss the food?


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