The Top 10 Most Portable Careers

A portable career is any career you can take with you no matter where you go. Rather than being tied to a single company, portable careers are based more in a person’s skills. Individuals who want to work overseas thrive when pursuing a portable career.

The biggest reason most individuals choose a portable career is freedom. With the right set of skills, a person can pick up and move anywhere in the world with minimal career disruption.

Can Any Career Be Portable?

Every career has some element of portability. Whether it is skills, credentials, or simply a person’s unique qualities, some element can be carried into a portable career choice. By understanding how these skills can be carried into a portable work situation, individuals can often create their own portable careers and pursue foreign job opportunities.

The number of portable careers available has increased greatly thanks to advancements in communication technology. Careers that previously were limited to specific geographic areas can now be pursued anywhere in the world.

Here are some common traits among portable careers:

  • They are based in high-demand skill sets or services (such as careers in healthcare, training, and technology).
  • They are not usually based in specific credentials that may not be recognized worldwide.
  • They do not limit those who pursue them to a single geographic area or market.
  • They often require face-to-face or interpersonal interactions, whether in-person or virtually.
  • They usually embrace new technology, such as video chat, online payments, social networks, and more collaborative tools.
  • They favor those who speak more than one language.

Here are the top 10 most portable careers in 2015:

1. Teacher

Those trained to teach English as a second language are often very successful in finding work. Thanks to the internet, those who want to work overseas can teach any subject, not just English. Teachers who understand how to connect with their students and find new pupils are ideal candidates for international employment. For example, a math teacher living in Egypt can have students in Canada.

2. Web Designer

The spread of internet technology has been accompanied by a growing need for individuals who can design and create effective websites. No matter what language is spoken, basic principles of readability, usability, and accessibility must be followed to reach a target audience. Thus, individuals who understand how to apply these principles can find work anywhere in the world. Virtual teaming is also a common choice for web designers.

3. Massage Therapists

Whether in private salons, nursing homes, or hospitals, massage therapists offer a valuable service. Although the requirements to practice massage therapy vary by region, the principles can be carried across any border and lead to satisfying foreign job opportunities.

4. Trainers and Presenters

Video technology enables anyone to give a presentation, lecture, or training seminar from anywhere. By recording these trainings, individuals can deliver high-quality mentorship to businesses, individuals, and everything in-between.

5. Project Managers

New virtual collaboration tools allow those who are able to carefully organize projects (such as the development of an app, setting up an online business, or running a fundraiser) to work with team members in any time zone.

6. Software Developer

Like website development, skilled software developers can apply their skills anywhere in the world. In fact, it’s very common for teams to be comprised of individuals in multiple countries. The increasingly international nature of development teams means those desiring a portable career won’t be held back by not living near a tech hotspot.

7. Writers and Editors

The requirements to begin a career in writing are fairly simple: have a computer and the ability to write for an audience. The requirements for editors are similarly simple. Companies in all industries need skilled writers and editors on staff, making those who can fill these roles highly valuable and portable.

8. Interpreters and Translators

Those who speak multiple languages can easily find themselves working as interceptors and translators in a foreign country. Interpreting at international conferences, escorting diplomats who may not speak the local language, and interpreting for individuals in court are just a few of the many opportunities for those who can quickly translate one language to another.

9. Accountants

Depending on local regulations, it may be possible for those trained in the art of accounting to use their skills abroad. Accounting is a universal skill and needed in every organization, generating a global demand for accountants.

10. Flight Attendants

Flight attendants usually have the luxury of choosing the airport from which they will be based. This gives them great flexibility when deciding where to live, as long as it is within commuting distance to their home airport.

Considering a Portable Career?

Having the freedom and flexibility to work anywhere is quite rewarding and a tremendous benefit of a portable career. Working abroad also gives you a cultural lens and learn the language, customs, and etiquette of another country. Before moving abroad, research and learn how to do business overseas. Find out the top 10 tips on international business customs.  

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Top 10 TIps on International Business Customs