Work in a city with quality of life – is that possible?

by Lucas Migray – columnist

Last week I already talked about the best cities to live and work. But good job opportunities are not everything. Quality of life in a city also plays an important role in the decision to accept a job offer or not. 

In the past, life in big cities was not particularly good. After the Industrial Revolution, many people moved to the cities because they had more opportunities to get a job in the factories. But the cities were dirty, with plenty of smoke and disease. Only with the Belle Epoque in France did this trend change. 

Not only the cities became more beautiful, but also the working conditions became better over the years. Therefore, the quality of life also increased. Especially in Europe, great importance is attached to cities that are worth living in. It is therefore not surprising that European spots dominate the quality of life rankings. 

Every year, the well-known consulting firm Mercer publishes a report naming the most livable cities in the world. In 2019, eight European cities have made it into the top 10, with six of them located in German-speaking countries. 

1st place: Vienna, Austria

2nd place: Zurich, Switzerland

3rd place: Auckland, New Zealand/Munich, Germany/Vancouver, Canada

6th place: Düsseldorf, Germany

7th place: Frankfurt, Germany

8th place: Copenhagen, Denmark

9th place: Geneva, Switzerland

10th place: Basel, Switzerland

Although we already took a look at the city of Munich last week, I would like to take Munich as an example again today. So what is so special about Munich?

Liveable cities score points not only with clean air. They offer security, freedom and infrastructure.  Although all German cities score highly on safety, Munich is the safest city in Germany with over a million inhabitants. 

 “Crime rates are low, law enforcement is efficient, and social and political conditions are stable,” explains Mercer expert Ulrike Hellenkamp.  “In addition, Munich offers an excellent range of international schools, a good urban infrastructure and a wide variety of leisure activities – an aspect that exerts a strong attraction on younger expatriates.”

He goes on to say:

“Munich has made great efforts in recent years to attract talent and companies, for example by continuously investing in high-tech infrastructure. Another focus has been the promotion of cultural institutions. These steps have led to the capital of Bavaria moving up to third place in the overall ranking”.

Munich has been moving in an upward spiral for decades: many companies are settling in the state capital and the surrounding area. As a result, almost every school leaver has a perspective for training and employment. Prosperity contributes to people’s sense of security and the income from trade tax allows for a steady expansion of the infrastructure. These in turn are factors that attract companies. 

Source: Unsplash


Lost in Translation

Did you know that artificial intelligence is already attending our translation needs? For some weeks ago, I was introduced by my sister to DEEPL and since then the world became even closer.

There are about 10 languages included and I could imagine that some others might be on the way!

Please go ahead and give it a try! I promise that you will not be disappointed, also not for those languages you think you don’t help for translations.

Some insights for the Post-Pandemic World

Invention of World Wide Web

“Invention of World Wide Web” by nunecoe is licensed under CC PDM 1.0

The world has already changed a lot since the last months under pandemia and will be changing even more in the next months. Prior to the coronavirus many companies and many people spent a huge amount of time on discussing topics such as remote work and if there could be a basis of trust high enough to accept people working at home, at least sometimes. The crisis has changed the world upside down and companies who were not already flexible enough with their peers, had to accept change in a rather absurdly rapid path. Here are some insights on what the current changes might mean for you, being involved in an international career search or aspiring for it:

  • Companies might be offering lower benefit packages and might be delaying hirings as they want to be cautions and make sure they can spare some active capital in the current difficult times
  • Some companies might decide to have less physical buildings and to offer more remote work / home office, reducing costs and improving flexibility
  • Lay off scenarios and the necessity of reacting to changing customer expectations and demand might make the job search even a bit (or much) more difficult
  • Re-opening offices will be involved with the “new normal” (home office rotation, health & safety measures, reduce work and meeting space due to social distancing, etc.)
  • So called feminine leadership competencies such as empathy, being able to understand people and react to their needs might be requested even more due to the difficulties caused by a long lasting stress situation during pandemia
  • The need to be able to express capabilities and talents in a post-pandemic world while looking for a job is even higher, as companies will tend to look for low-risk candidates
  • Due to all described above, many job searchers might be demotivated and might decide to stop looking for a job opportunity. But… after pandemic, there might be even more unemployed people. The right timing to look for a job opportunity is…. NOW!

Cities of Opportunities

by Lucas Migray – our brand new columnist!

In a rapidly developing world, cities need to reinvent and modernise themselves in order to remain relevant and attract qualified staff. According to the “law of globalisation”, only innovative cities have a future. At the so-called “war of talents”, cities fight for talented people. Therefore cities invest more and more in infrastructure, networking, innovation, education and leisure.

The “Cities of Opportunity” ranking is published by the firm Movinga after intensive analysis. Are you curious about the result? German (and European) cities are doing pretty well. Seven out of 10 cities are located in Europe!

Top ten – The best cities to work in the world:

1. Boston (United States)

2 Munich (Germany)

3 Calgary (Canada)

4 Hamburg (Germany)

5 Stuttgart (Germany)

6 London (Great Britain)

7 Singapore (Singapore)

8 Oslo (Norway)

9 Frankfurt (Germany)

10 Edinburgh (United Kingdom)

Let’s take a closer look at Munich.

http://<a title=”Thomas Wolf, / CC BY-SA 3.0 DE (” href=””><img width=”512″ alt=”Stadtbild München” src=””></a>

The Bavarian capital is currently experiencing strong economic and population growth. The city is strong when it comes to biotech and IT. This is where Allianz, Siemens, is located, Infineon and BMW – four DAX companies. Therefore, expenditure on innovation and networking is particularly high.

The British Guardian has therefore already christened the Bavarian capital “Europe’s Silicon Valley” – nowhere is the rate of technology patents per inhabitant higher than here.

However, this growth places high demands on the city’s land management. The Werksviertel near Munich’s Ostbahnhof station is a current example of this.

According to local media, around 1.5 billion euros will be invested in the conversion of the plant quarter and after completion, around 3,000 inhabitants will use the plant district as a House.

A number of remarkable office developments are also part of the project and could attract more than 12,500 employees to Munich. The mixed-use quarter offers shopping facilities as well as leisure, sports and Cultural facilities, including cinemas and a new concert hall.

Especially for engineers (think of BMW, Siemens and Co.), managers and consultants Munich is attractive, the lively start-up scene, large media groups, the strong But the science location and the booming tourism also offer a lot more in other areas great odds.

By the way, the Bavarian state capital has been leading all rankings for years in terms of quality of life and the Munich metropolitan area is known to be one of the strongest Germany’s economic engine.

Sources and reading recommendations:

Europas innovativste Städte: Berlin und München in Top 10

Pure Gratitude

An enormous feeling of gratitude, like that one which almost lets your heart explode inside your chest, is what I feel at the moment when I go back to the questionnaire I did a few weeks ago and check the results!

When I prepared this questionnaire, I received help from all sides, but on the other hand some people asked me how much I would invest to get answers and some said that the questionnaire had become too long (which is true) and that they were afraid that many would open the file but would not complete all the questions.

The end result is that 121 (!) people contributed to a very extensive survey, which will enable me to assess even better the desires and expectations of those seeking a job abroad, more specifically in Europe. And out of these 121 people, 72 left their e-mail address to be informed about the Connexx project and to participate in a book draw.

I just made the draw (using a random number generator)… and the winner is…

Kaka Furst!

As I don’t know if she is someone who speaks Portuguese, I just sent an e-mail in English offering one or two of my signed books or a book of her choice for 20 euros, in case the person doesn’t speak Portuguese.

If you should know who she is, please tell her to take a look at her mailbox!

I would like to once again leave a big thank you to everyone who participated. A project cannot go ahead if many people don’t give their share of contribution. And in Connexx’s case, I can see that I’ve received a lot of support! Therefore, I feel pure gratitude!!!

Effective Leadership

“Brain Quirks” by kire is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

To be most an effective leader we need to understand people and their specific challenges and we need to relate to their feelings and emotional state. We need to be able to understand someone else’s perspective and we need to be open to hearing and seeing what they hear, see, and feel. This means we need to be able to use both sides of our brain, analytical and emotional intelligence at the same time. Read more about this insightful subject here, learning how these networks function and how we can access them.

Source: Article “The best managers balance analytical and emotional intelligence” from the HBR.

Quote of the Day

Hi there! Today is Sunday and in the morning, specially when I wake up earlier than the rest of the family and it’s raining outside, I start thinking about my projects and about my life.

My daughter has just got her dream job! And it is an exercise of gratitude with life and a recognition of all efforts, hers and mine, reading a coaching document I’ve produced with her 6 years ago in 2014.

This document explains WHY she choose what she choose during the last past years and somehow (happy discover!) describes the PRESENT. What a gift from universe, isn’t it?

My deepest belief as a career coach and dream mentor is that the world should be surrounded by people who dare to be themselves and LOVE what they do. If we shine, others will shine around us!

I wish you a great Sunday full of discoveries!!!