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Bon Soir everyone.


As the title of my post eludes too, I am still in the process of trying to find some work in gay Paree! Thankfully my girlfriend found work rather quicker than I, but I am finding my days as a job seeker to be rather unfulfilling and I don't feel like I'm getting anywhere?


I had an appointment at the pol d employi on the 5th of November that as far as I can tell was utterly pointless... from what I could gather, I can't claim benefits (which I didn't want to anyway) the office I went into told me that they didn't run ANY classes for foreign job seekers to learn the lingo, and the guy I spoke with helpfully added that I would struggle finding work not speaking French (PAS DE LA MERDE SHERLOCK!) He did, on the other hand sign me up to something, but I have NO idea what it was. So this has left me in a bit of a pickle really.

I have been rampant in the C.V sending department, I must of papered the city twice over, my email outbox is stuffed to bursting with employment enquiries, yet sadly all I have to show for all my efforts is two failed interviews and a whole lot of rejection....(cue les violons)

Thankfully I am a thick skinned (some would say thick headed) sort of bloke, so the rejection letters I can handle, my path is a clear one, what I need from you LOVELY HELPFUL EXPAT FORUM PEEP'S Is your help and advice to get me PARLER FRANCAIS ASAP.

So if you know of any free classes in your area, OR you know of ANY employer looking for a dashing handsome fluent English speaker then I'd love to hear from you, as you would probably make my month.

If you have read my message to this point, I thank you for your perseverance.:ranger:
 

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It might help a bit if you outlined what you do, or would be willing to do. It isn't going be exactly easy in the present climate to find employment without French, even fluent French speakers are finding it bloody difficult.
 

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Refreshing to read a post that didn't bleat interminably about the unaccommodating Frogs in the country YOU've chosen to come live in.

Get your French up to scratch; tailor your cv to how the French expect to see one; don't hold your breath... Sorry, I can't suggest or propose anything which might make your passage in this part of your life any easier other than *just persevere*.

Hils
 

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Thanks for the quick responses!

I am trying to get onto a language course that begins in January, sadly it cost's a small fortune and at the moment money is at a premium in our household. Its ok though, I'm thinking of selling unwanted/unneeded body parts on ebay! lol

What makes thing a million times worse is Christmas is around the corner, a time of year when I would happily punch a carol singing in the neck, just to make them go away..... As you may be able to tell, I make Ebineezer Scrooge seem a cheerful chap at this time of year.

Ah well I will have to muddle along with my basic French for a couple more months, then see about making my New Years resolution, to parler Francais BIG TIME in January.
 

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Hello

I've recruited in the for jobs and interviewed many students in France for business school entrance, and I've given cv English cv courses in France.

If you are getting a high rejection rate to cv letters then I suggest something is wrong.

- your cv /letter are in poor French or not in the required style. Buy a good book and get help with your writing in French

- you are applying for the wrong jobs ? Perhaps lower your aspirations for the first job?

- try some Internet personality tests , they may help you to know yourself better.

- try talking to a French person who has a job. Ask them about cvs letters, interviews etc. Ask as many people as you can and see what the common ideas are.


I've got ppt overheads and handouts in English, French students tell me that they work in France too, but I have not done the research. Send me a pm with your email and I'll send you some bumpff.

Good luck.......DejW
 

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Discussion Starter #6
It might help a bit if you outlined what you do, or would be willing to do. It isn't going be exactly easy in the present climate to find employment without French, even fluent French speakers are finding it bloody difficult.
Hi

Sorry I should of mentioned, I have recently graduated from a U.K based University with a BSc in Environmental Science, so the work I was originally applying for was in the environmental sector.

I am aware however that this is a highly specialised area and that my degree wouldn't exactly have employers falling over themselves to employ me, so I have been applying to other sectors of the employment market that I feel I have relevant experience in.

I have a great deal of experience in administration and office work, I also have experience of construction work as my last job was being a scaffolding operative for a large scaffolding company in the U.K. and I have also got extensive experience of the industrial sector, so basically I have a wide experience of different employment sectors.

I think my only problem is the language barrier, and once this is over come, I firmly believe that France will be my Oyster, I have worked hard all of my life, and would just love the chance to start making a contribution to this wonderful country.

I know it's going to take time for me to find an employer in Paris, but I'm nothing if not patient.

Thanks for the response, and sorry I didn't make things clearer in my original post.
 

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One thing to consider is that in France what counts is your "qualification" and not necessarily your experience. Fresh out of school, however, most native French speakers are looking at CDDs (i.e. temporary jobs), not at full employment in a permanent job.

There are cheap (not free) language lessons to be had out in the suburbs - possibly in Paris, too, but these are the ones I know of. Accueil - Site créé avec 1&1 TopSite Express Bures and Orsay are about 35 to 40 minutes out of Paris on the RER B line. Their next round of classes probably begins in January, but check with them directly to be sure.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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The GRETA in Essonne do do a French language course for non-French (cost on application); it started in Sept this year and runs for a year; you might still be able to get on to it, or otherwise find a private tutor.

H
 

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Hi

Sorry I should of mentioned, I have recently graduated from a U.K based University with a BSc in Environmental Science, so the work I was originally applying for was in the environmental sector.

I am aware however that this is a highly specialised area and that my degree wouldn't exactly have employers falling over themselves to employ me, so I have been applying to other sectors of the employment market that I feel I have relevant experience in.

I have a great deal of experience in administration and office work, I also have experience of construction work as my last job was being a scaffolding operative for a large scaffolding company in the U.K. and I have also got extensive experience of the industrial sector, so basically I have a wide experience of different employment sectors.

I think my only problem is the language barrier, and once this is over come, I firmly believe that France will be my Oyster, I have worked hard all of my life, and would just love the chance to start making a contribution to this wonderful country.

I know it's going to take time for me to find an employer in Paris, but I'm nothing if not patient.

Thanks for the response, and sorry I didn't make things clearer in my original post.

You think your only problem is the language barrier ??

No matter how experienced you are, nor how many qualifications you have, if you don't speak the language you are effectively unable to communicate adequately in order to do any job.

I know of several young persons who obtained jobs in Paris at the end of the 2011 academic year. How? They all had learnt the French language as part of their degrees.

I understand from your earlier posts that your girlfriend is a French speaker and does tutoring in the French language?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Hello

Yes I understand fully that without speaking the language I am pretty useless to any French employer, (You weren't the bloke I spoke to at the Pole d emploi are you???? just kidding)
I would of learned as part of my degree but my time was taken up with a great deal of scientific research for my modules as well as my dissertation. I enrolled at university after being made redundant as a scaffolder in 2008.

I had zero academic experience, but I had a passion for the environment and a motivation to succeed in education, happily I managed to pass my degree, but it did mean alot of sleepless nights as I had a mountain of chemistry, biology and physics to catch up on, just so some of the assignments made sense to me.

And yes my girlfriend is a qualified modern foreign languages teacher, and she has thus far taught me everything I know of French, she teaches me little things every day, but sadly she works nearly 12 hours a day in the city, so when she comes home she is exhausted and the last thing I want to be doing is tapping her already weary brain for information? Call me an unthinking insensitive fool but I'd much rather have her evening meal on the table or a hot bath run for her, she is wonderful and she does all she can for me, I just want to be a bit more independent to show her that I'm making this commitment to learn a new language, so it takes the pressure off her being my interpreter most of the time, and gives me the chance to show her how much my new life here means? I'm a very lucky man and i remind myself on a daily basis.

Bev, Hils, relocatella, and Dejw and Crawford thank you for taking time to leave comments Bev especially thank you for your post regarding useful links....I have signed up with the AVF web site and am looking into the possibility of French conversation workshops with them, as well as volunteering to help out with the English conversation workshops, this kills two birds with one stone as it helps me learn what I need as well as fills my days up whilst I await the right job with the right employer.... YOU FOLKS ARE JUST FANTASTIC THANKS FOR ALL YOUR HELP!
 

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Ooh, volunteer with the English conversation groups at AVF and you'll make LOTS of friends quickly. That gets you into networking, and networking is the thing you really need here in France to find jobs. Offer to do language exchanges with the folks in the English conversation groups (another way to become amazingly popular!) - 45 minutes of English conversation in exchange for 45 minutes of French, all over a cup of tea or coffee, or a beer or glass of wine (or two).
Cheers,
Bev
 

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A few more ideas

Try doing some charity work, I worked for Resto du coeur when I arrived in France. I made friends, learnt French in the workplace, understood the SS system etc.

As suggested, offer your time to teach English, form an English discussion group etc in return for help in French - correcting CV and letters etc. I formed an English discussion group in deep and dark Normandie and met some very interesing "professional" class people. The invited me for dinner etc an opened many doors in the otherwise closed French society.

Try the Mairie or whatever you have in your part of Paris. Offer to help with translations, organise events, ANYTHING to get you integrated. You will meet people, perhaps some are useless idiots, some may have useful contacts (....you must talk to my wife, she is DRH of ......). I'm always surprised how productive this type of networking can be, and how it spreads.

Print some business cards (Cartes de Visite) in the French format. Buy sheets of A4 blanks in the super market and ask MS Word very nicely if he will print them for you! Give one to everyone that you meet. This has 2 advantages - you name and tel no are in print, not lost in someone's memory....and you are different from the others and that you are going places.

DejW
 

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Just an observation ... your written English is teeming with grammatical errors. Be sure that your CVs and motivation letters in both English and French are impeccable so far as orthography and grammar is concerned. It's your first change to impress ...
 

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Just an observation ... your written English is teeming with grammatical errors. Be sure that your CVs and motivation letters in both English and French are impeccable so far as orthography and grammar is concerned. It's your first change to impress ...
Eeeeeek Garonne! I'm surprised at you! I think you mean "chance"? - by any chance?

;) x
 

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Hello!

I agree with Bev and DejW, definitely try to get involved with conversation classes, they improve their English while you improve your French and sometimes these exchanges take place in a bar rather than a classroom which makes it much more interesting! I'm a TEFL teacher and have seen ads in the staffroom for this kind of thing, I'll look more closely next time I'm in work and post the details if you like?

You could also try applying for autoentrepreneur status and then offer private English lessons? If you print the business cards as suggested earlier and see if you try to print some posters too, you can usually post them on the notice boards in supermarkets for example. It would be ideal if you could do a CELTA or some other teaching course but even without these you should be able to pick up some private lessons.

The reason why I suggest going the autoentrepreneur route is because your client can then claim back 50% of your fees via their tax bills, which makes your services easier to sell. You need to be organised though because you're supposed to declare your earnings so that tax and social security can be deducted. Failure to do this means the tax authorities will come down on you like a ton of bricks (trust me, I know someone who got caught out that way, it was years ago and he's still paying down the debt now)

Good luck whichever route you take!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Hello again everyone.

All of your ideas seem fantastic, I will pursue them all with vigour. I love this forum, it is full of the nicest most helpful people. Thank you everyone, you have been a huge help, I can't thank you all enough.
 

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Well, just an observation, for what it's worth, but you do seem to be approaching it all with the right open-minded attitude (even if some of your written efforts are slightly iffy), and you sound like a lovely bf.

Stick with it, pay a bit more attention to detail, and you'll do fine.

H
 
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