Go France! Adapt to the working environment & achieve your dream

  • Career Center
  • Le 1 novembre 2019

We are delighted to bring you “Go France”, the guide for international students looking to work in France!

Devised and compiled by Audencia’s Career Centre and Alumni team, with the support of the School's student reporters, “Go France” is a valuable resource for internationals considering a career in France after their studies. Starting with HR professionals’ top tips and debunking the myths and realities of the workplace, Go France also showcases the experiences of more than 20 international alumni who have aced the challenge of finding a job in France.

This week, discover what Ayako Noguchi, MBA 17, has to say.

About Ayako

  • Graduated from the MBA 17 programme
  • Originally from Japan
  • Working as Crop Development Manager for Groupe Roullier in Rennes
  • Daily working language ▶ French (daily communications) and English (presentations)
  • Native language (s) ▶ Japanese
  • Level of French ▶ Upper intermediate /Advanced
  • Other languages spoken ▶ English, French, Spanish
  • Other degrees ▶ Bachelor in Agricultural Science

Ayako's key advice
Starting to work in France is just the begining. What is important is to adapt to the working environment and achieve your dream.

How it all started
After university graduation, I handled product management and development of vegetable seeds for the Asian markets for five years in a vegetable seed company, which breeds a new variety, produces its seeds, and sells them to distributors. I am currently working as a crop development manager of vegetable crops in the fertilizer company to support product and crop development for 35 subsidiaries.

Myths & realities
Realities: In France we have many paid holidays compared to other European and Asian countries and we use them all every year. For example, I have 25 paid holidays and 10 days for RTT per year, which is eqivalent to 7 weeks of holiday.
My biggest challenge
The biggest challenge was my French language skills. Since I was the only foreigner in the team, all the oral communication was in French from the first day of my internship. In the beginning, I was completely lost in the team meeting. France is one of the high context countries. Many abbreviations, "verlan," and "second degré" (I let you check what they are!) are used in the daily work conversation.

Speaking French
Two things mainly helped me to improve my French: studying hard and talking with French friends.

Advice and top tips
Sometimes, you will feel like complaining about daily life in France; it is because you don't understand why it is like that. However, everything has the explanation why. I recommend you to not keep your "why" in your mind and ask frankly to French people. It will allow you to understand the "logic" in France and to not feel upset even in the seemingly inconvenient situation. I recommend you read the "The culture map" by Erin Meyer which describes intercultural communication in the business field.
Are you an international alum in France or, are you a French alum working abroad?
Do you have a story to tell about your journey and how you secured your job or internship?
Do you have advice that you would like to share with current students?

If you have answered YES to all of the above, then please follow this link!

Thank you
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