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15 Sure Ways to Start Right in Canada

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Samuel Akuma was born and raised in Nigeria, a West African country where he had his first degree in Computer Engineering. Samuel came to Canada for Masters at the prestigious University of Waterloo and has since made Canada his home.

He faced tragedy after tragedy but persisted through it all and made it a success. “It was like being thrown into an ocean and you learn how to swim while drowning.”

LinkedIn is not a community for job seekers, it is the place to share knowledge, connect with great people, proffer solutions, and synthesize experiences. Finding job is a by-product, not the main thing. This is a secret.

Samuel shares his life’s journey, and how he was able to pull through with tips on getting ahead at the workplace as an immigrant; cultural integration; getting a hit through your resume and at interviews, and so much more.

Dos

  • Be hungry for knowledge.
    Canada is a highly organized country which can mean one thing: there is ample information available for you to use. Visit the library. Use the internet, after all, Google is your friend. Visit your bank to ask, for example, what is available for you on banking. Read, read, and read!
  • Study your map.
    Determine your location on Google map to see how you can navigate your immediate environment. In fact, you need to know how to use your map successfully.
  • Obey traffic rules.
    Knowledge of what is allowed and what is not is key here. So, ask questions and soak up knowledge wherever you find it.
  • Read signs everywhere.
    I once narrowly escaped paying a 500-dollar fine. My saving grace at the time was seeing the sign indicating the penalty at the nick of time. So, pay attention and read the signs.
  • Have a budget.
    It is suicidal to spend without thinking, all because you possess a credit card. The earlier you know that credit card is just what it is – CREDIT card, the better. Pay day will soon come so spend by budgeting.
  • Learn about the tax regime of your area.
    Although remarkably similar, this differs from place to place so learn about what applies where you are.
  • As a professional, never underestimate the power of LinkedIn.
    LinkedIn is not a community for job seekers, it is the place to share knowledge, connect with great people, proffer solutions, and synthesize experiences. Finding job is a by-product, not the main thing. This is a secret.
  • Be mentally strong.
    Expect anything and never take everything personal. Racism is still an issue around here. Developing thick skin to negative perception and negative experience is a survival skill that you should acquire.
  • Be very thorough.
    Understand every document before signing it.
  • Be on the pathway of continuous self-improvement.
    Take courses on Writing, on Interviewing, etc. Go on LinkedIn learning before you go for any professional interview. It is comprehensive enough.
  • Be honest! Honesty is a skill.
  • Open a savings account – and use it! Save

Don’ts

  • Do not be presumptuous.
    The rule of thumb is to ask when you are in doubt. Never assume.
  • Do not follow the Sales Boom.
    It is very enticing here and if you do not exercise restraint early enough, the credit piles up and you will end up frowning at everyone for no fault of theirs. There is a reason those items are on sale in the first instance. It is there because people refused to buy.
  • Do not jaywalk.
    Meaning, do not cross or walk across the street unlawfully or without regard for approaching traffic. Follow the traffic rules for pedestrians. Yes, it exists.

This list is not exhaustive. You can never do wrong to seek information and be flexible to both knowledge and change. To do otherwise is to prolong your period of integration. Remember that the secret of your success lies in your daily routine. The little, baby steps add up, leading to an improved version of yourself.

Keep evolving!

This article contains excerpts from Episode 56 of the Immigrant Life Podcast. Listen here for full benefit.

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