- Le 22 juillet 2022
Go Netherlands! If you speak the language, you can access the culture
Audencia's Career Center and Alumni teams are delighted to to bring you “Go Netherlands!”, the guide to working in the Netherlands.
Following the success of the guide to working in France for internationals, this new edition focuses on a country that is a destination of choice for Audencians. Members of its thriving community of students and alumni say they choose the Netherlands for its economic stability, work-hard-play-hard lifestyle, multiculturalism and for being a country where English is often the working language.
“Go Netherlands!” is a valuable resource for students considering a career in the Netherlands after their studies. Starting with HR professionals’ top tips and debunking the myths and realities of the workplace, Go Netherlands! also showcases the experiences of more than 20 alumni who have aced the challenge of finding a job and settling in the Netherlands.
This week, discover what Iratxe Gradaille from Spain has to say.
Graduated from the MSc European & International Business Management (EIBM) programme in 2011
Currently working as: Brand Manager LatAm - Nutricia Worldwide at Danone in The Hague
Native language: Spanish
Other languages spoken: English, French
Level of Dutch: intermediate
Been living in the Netherlands: for 8 years
Iratxe's key message: “If you speak the language, you can access the culture."
My biggest challenge
After living and studying in different countries, it was the moment to settle down and start a real career. Having a Dutch boyfriend, the Netherlands was a great place to give it a try! My biggest challenge was securing my first job which took me three months. Being a native Spanish speaker opened the door to me. Then, I found another position at Danone. Again, Spanish proved a plus. I started in the supply chain and after two years, I managed to move to marketing to follow my “dream” career.
My advice & top tips
In almost all contexts, from offices to feedback, the Dutch work culture is very open and flat. One day you can be sitting next to a director and the next day an assistant. Be prepared for direct but respectful feedback; it helps you to be more efficient. Make the most of the Dutch flexibility and working conditions (responsibilities, salaries, etc.) I am very grateful for my life here and how much I have grown both professionally and personally. Overall, companies are attentive to your career aspirations and you have regular conversations about your development. They treat you well so that you stay with the company.
Quirky & cultural
What I have found interesting in my work is that when a pregnancy is announced, celebrations are a big deal (maybe it’s because I work in the baby food industry)! However, overall, colleagues and managers are supportive in all your personal achievements and I find there’s less of a gender gap compared to other countries.
I miss Spanish food so when I go back to Spain to see my family, I fill my suitcase with ham and cheese!
Read your copy of "Go Netherlands" here