My Non-Teaching Job in Seoul, Korea (Marketing Role)
The part of my life that people are most curious about is my job here in Korea. I was incredibly fortunate to find a job as a marketing and social media manager in Seoul (along with a company willing to sponsor my visa and fight with the immigration office on my behalf!) so I wanted to share a bit about my experience.
Finding a Job:
For me, I knew about this company through a friend who had worked there part time a few years prior. I was able to apply directly through their site. There are Facebook groups (Non-Teaching Jobs Korea) as well as opportunities on LinkedIn and JobSee.kr. They’re very, very rare so don’t be discouraged! I found that being in Korea and meeting people really helped me find a job but more on that in the video below!
I first came here on a training visa, which is a D visa similar to a student visa. My company had to create a game plan for me, sharing my training schedule and the purpose of my being here in Korea. I was here for 2 years to learn my role well enough to help set up the American office and team.
At the end of my “training” period (where I was still a full time employee and salary, the “training” aspect was more for immigration’s sake) I returned to America where I worked for 3 months hiring an English language team and setting up our office in the US.
Here’s where the headache starts:
The company wanted me to continue to work at the headquarters in Korea which required a new visa, the dreaded E series. The E-7 visa is pretty tricky to get and luckily my HR team is incredible and helped me out immensely with getting it. I needed proof of previous work experience (including letters from former employers), my transcripts and diploma, a letter from a Korean government agency saying I’m a good candidate for the visa, and soooo many more documents. It was difficult, but we got it and now I am legally able to work in the PR/Marketing field in Korea.
I’m very lucky and have a CEO who was educated in America and wants our company to be as chill as possible. We don’t have the Korean hierarchy system (we call everyone by their first names, no titles) and we don’t have strict work hours or enforced overtime. My coworkers are all pretty young and we’re encouraged to share our opinions and be creative which is really rare in stereotypical Korean companies.
My CEO is a woman and we have lots of women in power positions in our company so we don’t play the patriarchal society’s games. If you’re the best at what you do, you get the position. That’s it!
I’m currently the only foreigner in our office so most of our communication is in Korean (meetings, emails, chatting, etc) but my coworkers are also able to explain anything in English in case I get lost but for the most part I can hold my own.
Community management, customer service, translation, viral marketing, advertising, content creation, social media management, localization. Every day is a little different, just how I like it!