Finland from an English experience.

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SteveJ
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Finland from an English experience.

Post by SteveJ » Mon May 05, 2003 11:58 am

I arrived in Finland May 29th 2002.

Why? Well my wife to be is Finnish and while she was happy to move to England with me she wanted me to move away from Sunderland and live somewhere else. That meant uprooting, getting a new job, new house etc so I thought, well I may as well go live in Finland!

There are some problems for me as an Englishman living here.

One the language. My own inability to speak foreign languages is legendary, so learning Finnish is possibly the hardest thing I've ever tried to do. However the language isn't so big a problem as most Finns have pretty good English.

Two: Because of One it was difficult to find a job. It took me about 2 months to get an interview and then the job. Many others on this list can vouch that it's hard over here to get work. In the UK the big difference is that at least you get replies to your emails. I think here it's a different story, probably most emails in English go in the bin.

Three: The beer is more expensive.

On the upside, I now live in a very beautiful, clean country where the people are still fairly honest. You can leave a bike for days in a public place and no-one touches it. You can hang your coat up in a bar cloakstand and go back hours later and it's still there and un-rummaged. Drop your wallet (and if it's got ID in it) it gets returned - This happened to me and it even had the money still there. When I phoned the person up who returned it they were amazed that I should want to take them out for a couple of thank you drinks or send them a bottle of Whiskey or something.

So if you can put up with one, two and three then coming here is for you. I would recommend it, certainly one of the best things I ever did.


I admit I've got a drink problem....Two hands, one mouth.

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Handsome
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Re: Finland from an English experience.

Post by Handsome » Mon May 05, 2003 12:59 pm

SteveJ wrote:I arrived in Finland May 29th 2002.

Why? Well my wife to be is Finnish and while she was happy to move to England with me she wanted me to move away from Sunderland...


Had no idea you are from Sunderland, Steve. I was just down the road before I came here - Hartlepool.

Stu


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SteveJ
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Post by SteveJ » Mon May 05, 2003 1:16 pm

Aye it's a small world.
Lived there most of me life. Have a good mate originally from Hartlepool, now I know this is probably a stupid question (for a population of over 100,000) but do you know anyone called Stephen Mincher. He's the monkey hanger I'm talking about ;o)
I admit I've got a drink problem....Two hands, one mouth.


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Post by Handsome » Mon May 05, 2003 1:31 pm

SteveJ wrote:Aye it's a small world.
Lived there most of me life. Have a good mate originally from Hartlepool, now I know this is probably a stupid question (for a population of over 100,000) but do you know anyone called Stephen Mincher. He's the monkey hanger I'm talking about ;o)


Yeah, the name rings a bell. I think he (or a brother) went to the same comprehensive school as me. That's where I remember the name from.


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SteveJ
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Post by SteveJ » Mon May 05, 2003 2:00 pm

Uuskomatonta!

He lives with a Danish lass now (who he met at work) in Sunderland.
I don't think he has a brother so it'll be him. Minch will be about 29ish I think.
I admit I've got a drink problem....Two hands, one mouth.


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WebDesEyen
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Post by WebDesEyen » Mon May 05, 2003 2:23 pm

one. learing the language is a challenge, but since i speak the other language from hell (dutch) finnish should be doable, and i am quite positive that as soon as i have people around me that speak only finnish i will learn. i am trying now, but without someone around to actually speak it with it just refuses to stick in my brain.

two. it only took you two months??? i am about to enter month 19 of unemployent! i should have moved a lot earlier!!!
(mumbling to self) man, what the fark am i still doing here and not with my sweetheart...)

three. i don't drink... so no problem.

the place i live in now is rapidly deteriorating. unemployment is at 21% (dus jeroen, niet terugkomen!!!), the government is as right wing as it can possibly be, and people will try to steal the air in front of your face if they get the chance. in addition to that i live next to the largest oil refinery in europe (shell botlek in rotterdam), so you can probably imagine what i get into my lungs every breath i take...
i should have studied something basic, like quantummechanics...


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SteveJ
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Post by SteveJ » Mon May 05, 2003 2:35 pm

Get outta there man! If you have been unemployed for 19 months you got nothing to lose.

I was lucky to get an interview pretty quickly. That's the hard bit.

As for the rest the system is pretty fair, you're from the EU and you speak dutch. Find companies in Finland that deal with the dutch and that's an angle for you.

Not saying it's easy but it's not any harder than you describe.
I admit I've got a drink problem....Two hands, one mouth.


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Hank W.
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Post by Hank W. » Mon May 05, 2003 2:37 pm

WebDesEyen wrote: unemployment is at 21% ...


Wat are you smoking, man? In February 2003, lowest rates were registered in Luxembourg (2.8%), the Netherlands (3.4% in January)...

Finland is at around 8-9%, not the worst in the Eurozone where something like 11% is the max in Spain.

If you mean industry specific =?
Cheers, Hank W.
sitting here like a lemon looking for a gin.


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jvrijn
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Post by jvrijn » Mon May 05, 2003 2:51 pm

WebDesEyen wrote: i am about to enter month 19 of unemployent! i should have moved a lot earlier!!!


It's no pic-nic here either Menno. I started job-hunting well before finishing my MBA studies and have been looking since October. No joy. For ppl with technical skills it might be better.

I can't believe the 21% unemployment rate and refer to Hank's posting. The Netherlands shoudl still be better than Suomi.

But hey, if you are really so dissatisfied with your life in NL, maybe you should move to Suomi. Wether you are depressed over there or over here doesn't make that much of a difference :)

/Jeroen


Ace

Post by Ace » Mon May 05, 2003 3:19 pm

WebDesEyen wrote:one. learing the language is a challenge, but since i speak the other language from hell (dutch) finnish should be doable, and i am quite positive that as soon as i have people around me that speak only finnish i will learn. i am trying now, but without someone around to actually speak it with it just refuses to stick in my brain.


Try the swedish first maybe? One of my friends here is Dutch and he says its so similar to Swedish he picked it up no problem. He speaks fluent Swedish now after just two years here and has a Job teaching in a a Swedish school, He still only speaks basic Finnish though.

The swedish speakers are a minority here but it might score you some work then you can learn the Finnish at the same time in Finland.

Just an idea!


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WebDesEyen
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Post by WebDesEyen » Mon May 05, 2003 3:51 pm

Hank W. wrote:Wat are you smoking, man? In February 2003, lowest rates were registered in Luxembourg (2.8%), the Netherlands (3.4% in January)...

Finland is at around 8-9%, not the worst in the Eurozone where something like 11% is the max in Spain.

If you mean industry specific =?


i actually quit smoking 509 days ago today...

i know that this is the official number. and it continues to amaze me how the dutch government continues to give such a false image.

this number (the mentioned 3.4%, which is highly outdated) is the number of people that actually get unemployment benefit. people getting any other form of benefit for whatever reason are not included in this, and the employers, the government and the organizations that have anything to do with handing out benefits do their very best to put you in anything but in the unemployment benefit group.

this means that people fresh out of school are not officially unemployed, but still are looking for a job.
this means that people that reach the end of their unemployment benefit and as a result of that slide into the welfare group are not officially unemployed, but still are looking for a job.
this means that people that had some accident and as a result of this can't do their old job anymore and as a result of that get disability checks but that still are extremely capable of doing anything else are not officially unemployed, but still are looking for a job.
this means that people having been away for a while because of raising kids or living abroad or whatever and thus get no benefit whatsoever are not officially included, but still are looking for a job.

the number of people that is able to work here is about 7 million. out of those 7 million only 5.3 million actually works. the rest is unemployed in some way. not all are looking for a job, but the majority is. and this army of unemployed is joined by 25,000 to 30,000 new unemployed people every month.
i should have studied something basic, like quantummechanics...


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jvrijn
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Post by jvrijn » Mon May 05, 2003 3:55 pm

In The Netherlands, especially the disabled group is particularly big. It would be good to have some European standards on reporting of statistics. A fair statistic might be the participation rate. = Number of employed / Total population.

/Jeroen


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WebDesEyen
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Post by WebDesEyen » Mon May 05, 2003 3:58 pm

jvrijn wrote:It's no pic-nic here either Menno. I started job-hunting well before finishing my MBA studies and have been looking since October. No joy. For ppl with technical skills it might be better.

i am not a top ranking university person. i am a programmer, and next to that willing to do anything. i have read about the discriminating way the employers treat their applicants there, but here it is the same, and maybe even worse. this actually is one of the things that is waaay better in the usa...

jvrijn wrote:I can't believe the 21% unemployment rate and refer to Hank's posting. The Netherlands shoudl still be better than Suomi.

see my previous post...
for some it is, like the top level executives. they manage to continue to give themselves raises up to 25% per year. which is cause of a major discussion between the managements of companies like ING and Ahold.

jvrijn wrote:But hey, if you are really so dissatisfied with your life in NL, maybe you should move to Suomi. Wether you are depressed over there or over here doesn't make that much of a difference :)

/Jeroen

i have nothing here... hardly any family, no job, no future, no life with mentioning, no challenge. and like you say, one can be depressed anywhere. i'd rather be trying to fight myself a way out of it in a situation that requires me to be on full alert all the time, than here, in this =)(/& h0le of a country.
i should have studied something basic, like quantummechanics...


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jvrijn
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For Menno

Post by jvrijn » Mon May 05, 2003 4:09 pm

Well Menno,

I think programmers do have opportunities here, but you want to come in before Estonia joins the EU, because by then Finland will be flooded with skilled workers from Estonia, who are cheaper and have less trouble learning the language. Especially if you are able to code Java you should be able to find a job. Key though is to be available right here.

As for discrimination, yes it exists, but look at recent postings on . and you see a number of our people have found jobs.

However, I can't help thinking your feelings about the Netherlands are tainted by your situation. My opnion of Finland has hit an all-time low as well, but I know it's because I don't have a job (yet).

In the end it is your decision, your responsibility. Do you have a grilfriend in Finland?

/Jeroen


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WebDesEyen
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Re: For Menno

Post by WebDesEyen » Mon May 05, 2003 4:17 pm

jvrijn wrote:I think programmers do have opportunities here, but you want to come in before Estonia joins the EU, because by then Finland will be flooded with skilled workers from Estonia, who are cheaper and have less trouble learning the language. Especially if you are able to code Java you should be able to find a job. Key though is to be available right here.

i am more a html/php/mysql person, i build the front end of websites. but cal also run a prepress at a printers. and so many other things as well... i really am willing to do anything that gets me money.

jvrijn wrote:As for discrimination, yes it exists, but look at recent postings on . and you see a number of our people have found jobs.

indeed! and it amazes me... i can't find anything after applying my ass off in my own country, but there people not native find jobs in relatively little time.

jvrijn wrote:However, I can't help thinking your feelings about the Netherlands are tainted by your situation. My opnion of Finland has hit an all-time low as well, but I know it's because I don't have a job (yet).

at least you are there... i'll trade with you in a flash!

jvrijn wrote:In the end it is your decision, your responsibility. Do you have a grilfriend in Finland?

i do. she lives in vaasa, and i would like to find something there. her father knows a lot of people too (he is in some employers commitee) and will probably be able to help me find something.
(plan to move slowly turning into a concrete one)
i should have studied something basic, like quantummechanics...


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