Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Just the Right Book if You are Dreaming of a Portable Career

"Harness the winds of change for yourself and use them to sail to your next career destination".

This is just one of the great quotes in the 4th edition of A Career in Your Suitcase by Jo Parfitt and Colleen Reichrath-Smith. I am interested in this book even though I am not a trailing spouse but I am an adult third culture kid. I grew up moving around the globe and one of my dreams is to one day have a portable career. A career that I can just take with me when I move to the other side of the world for a couple of months or for longer. As it happens I am making a career change at the moment which is why I really enjoyed the book.

A portable career is work that you can take with you wherever you go. A portable career is based on who you are, your passion, your unique gifts and ability. It's the expression of yourself in your work.

The first couple of chapters are about finding your direction. What is your passion? The second part of the book helps you see your opportunity. The book is full of tips, inspiring quotes, exercises, resources and websites. The third part of the book puts it all together and adds practical information about working for yourself.

The book is inspiring and gives you lots of food for thought and for action of course. Something that struck me was the importance of connecting with other people. Barbara Sher, bestselling author of "I Could Do Anything If Only I Knew What it Was", advises, "Failure to achieve our career ambitions does not result from a lousy attitude; rather from isolation." There are many examples in the book of expat wives that connect with others abroad and discover their passions. Jo Parfitt tells her story of how she wrote a cookbook called Dates in Oman and became a successful journalist in Dubai. Now she runs Summertime Publishing.

Colleen Reichrath-Smith made an international move from Canada to the Netherlands for love. She shares her personal story and the challenges she faced on this journey like having to get her driving license in the Netherlands. Colleen has years of experience working in the career field.

The winds of change are blowing over this globe. In this time of globalization many people are making international moves and I honestly believe that the number of people with a portable career will increase. This book is worth reading because it's a great tool that will help you discover your skills and how you can use them to reach your goal. By the way it's very important to write down your goals. You should have a mission statement, there's more about that in the book. You will be put to work but it's worth it in the end. 

This is what Ruth van Reken, Co-author of Third Culture Kids: The Experience of Growing up Among Worlds, Co-founder of Families in Global Transition says about the book.  

"Through her Career In Your Suitcase program, Jo Parfitt helps people everywhere think outside of their traditional boxes. She not only teaches but models how each of us can make all the pieces of our lives work together to form something new and satisfying in the middle of a changing world. I recommend this book highly to all who want to learn how to begin seeing the possibilities of new beginnings they may not have recognised before."

For more information check the website Careerinyoursuitcase.com. You can follow @SuitcaseCareer on twitter. You can buy the book A Career in Your Suitcase here.

By the way if you buy A Career in Your Suitcase online from 12th - 16th May on Kindle it's free!

Interested in what others say about Career in Your Suitcase?
There's a webinar Create Your Portable Career by Colleen Reichrath-Smith on 23rd April 2013 2pm Sydney time.

Please share your experiences of your portable career if you have one.


  1. Thanks so much Janneke! I love the quote you pulled out too.

  2. You are welcome Colleen. I enjoyed reading the book and I really love all the exercises you included. The book really is worth reading for anyone who is moving abroad or just considering a career change.