April 23, 2019

My career: From start to Finnish

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Lluvia Salas Pérez, Mexico
Teacher

19 years ago, Lluvia fell in love with a Finn while holidaying in Cancún. After some back and forth, in 2005 they eventually decided Finland was the place for them. Lluvia had a degree in education from Mexico, but after moving to Finland she decided to study hotel, restaurant and tourism management and work in that industry instead. She has since returned to her teaching career and is now also studying an MBA in English studies, plus pedagogical studies, in order to become a fully qualified language teacher in Finland.

1. What I find surprising about working in Finland is… that you have rights! Haha! I mean, at least four weeks’ holiday, sick leave with pay, extra hours are paid etc. It’s sort of very human!

2. My favourite thing about Finland is… that I can get everything done on my phone here: anything library-related, do my groceries, quit church, pay taxes, handle school stuff, handle work stuff, get a train ticket, get a bus ticket, park the car, open a business… you name it. Basically, not having to go to some office to wait hours and swim in bureaucracy (not denying there is any, but I have faced very little – I have been to a bank office twice in 13 years). In fact, if I can’t do it over my phone or laptop, I most likely won’t do it…

3. How I got my current job is… basically, word of mouth. A good friend of mine advised me to mention, whenever possible and relevant, that I was changing careers and wanted to become a teacher. Very quickly after, my sister-in-law tipped me for my current teaching job, a friend for another one. Before that a neighbour asked if I wanted to work at her restaurant…

4. The Finnish word that best describes working here is… itsenäinen (independent), I would say. You’re trusted to work well, and no one is breathing down your neck to check what you’re doing.

5. The most influential Finn in my life is… my husband. He’s the most consistent, down-to-earth and real person I know. I truly admire him. And now my kids, who are the mini Finns I admire the most for being a fun (sometimes frustrating) combination of my Latin blood and his Finnish coolness.

We are getting to know what people born abroad think about working life in Finland.

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