Other parts to this series
|Part 1||Part 2||Part 3|
|Part 4||Part 5||Part 6|
|Part 7||Part 8||Part 9|
Part 2 – A Bit Of Background
In 2012, New Zealand Immigration ran a series of videos that popped up in my YouTube feed. It was incredibly intriguing and after discussing it, we were genuinely interested and researched quite a bit. It was, however, not the right time as we lacked the funds as well as having a rather small newborn on our hands. Despite our strong desire to want to make the move at that time, it faded from memory.
Fast forward several years to 2018 – I had left my job with the Puyallup School District in July 2014 and had been consulting for four years since. The change was transformational for me as it allowed me to meet new people, to travel and interact with others and to face new and challenging situations to grow professionally and personally. In every sense of the word, I loved what it is that I did, and couldn’t see myself going back to a ‘desk job’ doing regular IT again. Throughout this time my professional network grew, and I met someone who lived in New Zealand via online chat. After collaborating a bit after hours, he jokingly asked, “When are you moving to New Zealand?” – with that, the spark reignited within me and I was reminded that we had agreed that it was a great idea.
I sat on the idea for a bit, wondering how or if I should even approach the idea with Rebecca. After all, professionally I was very much enjoying what I was doing (though, I could do without the absurd commutes). I casually repeated the question in a sort of joking way to “trial balloon” the idea, and much to my surprise, Rebecca immediately agreed with a sort of sense that, “Oh, yeah, we did think that was a great idea!”
We discussed it again a few more times and went to work researching all about New Zealand life: Families, work, locations, lifestyles, hobbies. Everything from the exciting adventures in the more extreme adrenaline activities like bungy jumping and skydiving to the mundane, like shopping hauls from local super markets. After some time, we discussed it again and I asked Rebecca if she was still on board with the idea, and if so, to let me know when she was indeed certain of our decision, as I would reach out to professional contacts I had to try to network and make contacts in New Zealand. I certainly had no qualms with blindly applying online, but I know from experience that a simple recommendation goes a long way in getting in front of someone. Despite a strong resume, I know that the prospect of spending time considering a candidate that lives half a world away isn’t necessarily something all companies wanted to do, especially since the time investment required for such an effort isn’t small. A referral would go a long way in getting that first meeting, where I could explain just how serious I was, and why I’d make an ideal candidate.
Weeks had gone by and the feeling built within us until the time came: Yes, it was worth reaching out and leveraging relationships I had built with others to see if they might be able to connect me with someone in New Zealand. Through a series of e-mails, I talked with several individuals who had relocated or now lived in New Zealand to both explain our desire to move and ask for any insights into where we should look at living and working. It was through these networking conversations I became acquainted with the name “Inde”. By this point, it was decided that we would vacation for two or three weeks in New Zealand, to scout it out a bit, so I reached out to Inde, we exchanged a few initial e-mails and agreed that we’d chat when we visited New Zealand.
The. Wait. Was. Intense.