Finding English-speaking jobs in Paris - Mission Impossible

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Finding English-speaking jobs in Paris - Mission Impossible


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Old 24th November 2009, 11:55 AM
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Exclamation Finding English-speaking jobs in Paris - Mission Impossible

Hi,

I have fairly recently moved to Paris, 30y.o. and work in Finance. I have been looking for anything remotely relevant to finance where English is the working language, with very little success so far!

There are quite a few positions, but generally French is still required to some extent (my French is very Basic). I think I have applied for every single position available in Paris now (obviously, working in Finance I have a spreadsheet to confirm this!). I rather foolishly thought that Paris might be an international financial centre where English is becoming the working language, but it turns out it isn't sadly. Strangly the best jobs seem to require English mother toungue but also decent French (presumably for admin etc).

I would be interested to hear from anyone else that has had a similar experience or that has actually succeeded in finding a suitable finance job in Paris (without speaking much French). What are other ppls thoughts on this? Also I would be interested in getting in touch with anyone that has recently moved to Paris and in a similar position, or looking to learn French?

Cheers,

Steve

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Old 24th November 2009, 03:27 PM
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Back before I came to France to live, I worked for one of those international companies where English was supposed to be the "working language" for all offices within the company. Practically speaking what that means is that anyone hired by the local office was supposed to be able to speak English in addition to the local language. To be honest, that wasn't always the case.

The only English-only speakers in most of the international offices were short-term transferees from the US headquarters or visiting "suits" from the US.
Cheers,
Bev

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Old 26th November 2009, 07:42 AM
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Default a few tricks

As a non -French speaker, Paris might be difficult indeed especially for finance jobs.
Yes English is THE finance language, but in France one needs to speak French and in Rome, needs to speak Italian I presume. They are a few ways of securing a job

- go to your nearest local APEC office, register, or scout on internet such as [url=http://www.apec.fr] (it is all in French) or any commercial website cadremploi, cadresonline and so on.

- mix with English (and non English) speaking people: church, synagogue, mosque, clubs, gyms, art galleries, sport club, universities and other assemblies, and check local boards

- learn French fast: take a boyfriend or a girlfriend. Or both....

- scout for jobs in your country of origin as well for jobs in France (Paris). It might be easier to be recruited there first and be posted in Paris

- try Zurich, London or Monaco instead of Paris (In Zurich they are not so cruel about non-German speakers, in Monaco nobody cares. )



Good hunting


Last edited by GALLUS; 26th November 2009 at 07:50 AM. Reason: correct
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Old 27th December 2009, 07:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Faraday555 View Post
generally French is still required to some extent
I really can't see why you should expect anything else. Could you really envisage someone working in your old job in the UK who didn't speak any English?

This is France - they speak French here.

I'm an English trainer in business English - it's my job to speak English all day and refuse to speak French! However, I would never get any work if I was unable to survive an interview in French, to ring my students (who are often "nul" in English) to arrange the first lesson, or to pay my taxes. Admin. is in the language of the country where you choose to work.

As a 30-y-o you should have no problem learning French quickly - make that your first objective.

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Old 27th December 2009, 10:59 PM
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My thoughts are that this is gonna be the issue wherever you go in the world where english isnt the nationl language. In fact I would imagine it would annoy the french if you were employed over someone who could speak the language?? I know how I would have felt in the UK if I'd ended up with a colleague who I couldnt "chat" to and who was employed over and above someone who could speak the national language, regardless of their skills. So get some lessons and emmerse yourself LOL

Jo xxx

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Old 10th February 2010, 05:10 PM
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Hello!
I moved to Paris last july after having work in an investment bank Milan - based for 6 years.

I swear I sent CV eeeverywhere and never got a call. I sent 3 to London and got one call.

Are you still looking for a job?

cheers
Laura

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Old 11th February 2010, 02:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Shelagh View Post
I really can't see why you should expect anything else. Could you really envisage someone working in your old job in the UK who didn't speak any English?

This is France - they speak French here.

I'm an English trainer in business English - it's my job to speak English all day and refuse to speak French! However, I would never get any work if I was unable to survive an interview in French, to ring my students (who are often "nul" in English) to arrange the first lesson, or to pay my taxes. Admin. is in the language of the country where you choose to work.

As a 30-y-o you should have no problem learning French quickly - make that your first objective.
Hey Shelagh, sorry to hijack, but I'd love to learn more about your job; I'm moving to Paris (fluent French, American national) and am a teacher/trainer by profession, this sounds like something I could do...how did you get started, what is the general pay scale, etc? (PM if you like)

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Old 11th February 2010, 03:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Isabelle/Solange View Post
Hey Shelagh, sorry to hijack, but I'd love to learn more about your job; I'm moving to Paris (fluent French, American national) and am a teacher/trainer by profession, this sounds like something I could do...how did you get started, what is the general pay scale, etc? (PM if you like)
Please don't PM...we'd all like to know!! Isabelle...when do you plan your move? I am a teacher as well...I would like to get my CELTA and teach english or work in an international school. I'd love any info on this topic! Moderator...my apologies for the off topic post..feel free to move me to a separate thread.
To the original poster....you can learn french!! If I can then anyone can. I highly recommend the Rosetta Stone software. I am using it to learn Italian and my school district uses it for the ESL students...good luck and don't give up your dream. Just be a realist though.

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Old 11th February 2010, 04:10 PM
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Another vote for Rosetta Stone - I used it to learn Greek. It's a very good method, if expensive.

The BBC has free French lessons available on their website, and at this link

Resource: French in Action

you can find all the videos from the fabulous "French in Action" series of the 80's, free. This is my husband's primary method of learning French, and I love watching with him and frequently learn something or am reminded of a turn of phrase I had forgotten, even though I've been learning and speaking French since I was 12. It focuses heavily on idiomatic speech rather than focusing on the rules of grammar, etc.

Softouch, we are moving in Aug. - my husband's job is at a research institute and will start Sept. 15, but my daughter will need to start school Sept. 2.

Old 21st July 2010, 08:56 AM
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Old 21st July 2010, 02:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Isabelle/Solange View Post
Another vote for Rosetta Stone - I used it to learn Greek. It's a very good method, if expensive.

The BBC has free French lessons available on their website, and at this link

Resource: French in Action

you can find all the videos from the fabulous "French in Action" series of the 80's, free. This is my husband's primary method of learning French, and I love watching with him and frequently learn something or am reminded of a turn of phrase I had forgotten, even though I've been learning and speaking French since I was 12. It focuses heavily on idiomatic speech rather than focusing on the rules of grammar, etc.

Softouch, we are moving in Aug. - my husband's job is at a research institute and will start Sept. 15, but my daughter will need to start school Sept. 2.
Isabelle! Your move must be in full swing by now. Are you excited? You didn't mention how old your daughter is? Did we ever get a response from Shelagh about her job? Keep us up to date.

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