At GalaxShe, we are trying to help understand what are the factors that prompt us to chose a different path and learn from each other. So I’m curious to hear from you if you decided to take a break or change tracks and start on your own, what were the driving factors.
1 thought on “Many of us stepped off the corporate treadmill at various stages of our careers. What made you choose to step out / opt-out/change tracks completely?”
I started my career in HR in the IT industry. I relocated to the USA to work there which was the utopia in the 90’s. But after I worked there for a year across 2 cities, I realised that that was not a country I wanted to live the rest of my life in, so I came back to India and looked for another job.
After the Y2K bust in 2001 where companies had over hired and ended up with much lower workloads than initially projected, I had to retrench almost half our workforce and resign at the end of that process.
I co-founded a consulting start up with an ex-CEO of one of the largest HR consulting companies of the time. But we realised that our operating styles were too different from each other and parted ways.
I then ran my own consulting start up and freelanced as a consultant and trainer for the next few years as well as taught at colleges and B-Schools, until we relocated to Egypt for my husbands job.
As an accompanying spouse, my visa did not allow me to work, study or earn in Egypt which is why I could only take up volunteer work or work which could be paid for via paypal/ T&E / cash etc.
This is when I moved towards Intercultural adaptation training and consulting, as my clients were global, I interacted with them online and I could be paid via paypal (this was before the days of FATCA etc)
This continued through our next few stints in Dubai, Delhi, Guwahati, Ahmedabad, London. This job is location agnostic, but international financial regulations can cause issues in payments and taxation, making it difficult for companies to hire international trainers unless they have an office or subsidiary or tie-up in the country they pay me in, so its obviously getting more complicated with constantly changing regulations.
I moved to South Africa just a week before the global lockdown last year, so I haven’t even attempted to contact local companies about opportunities here since I am at high risk and have been in self imposed isolation for most of the last 14 months.