All that glitters is not always gold...

A Macleay graduate gives a bird's eye view of a job with lots of global travel

Jye Smith

When you're looking at jobs, or talking to people about jobs – the subject of travelling inevitably always comes up. But, as I was forewarned by some very insightful mentors, it can be a very unglamorous experience at times.

My life is spent in the cold fluorescent lighting of airports, taxi stands, hotel lobbies, back of taxis and standing in conference rooms; only to do the whole thing again in reverse. I pride myself on being able to pick the best plane seats, nailing the one-handed passport/boarding pass check and getting through any metal detector without removing an article of clothing.

What on earth happened? I never remember caring about this stuff! I'm sick of eating out of tiny silver boxes they call plane food. I'm sick of waking up in hotels room out of some lovely dream trying to work out where I am, if I've over slept and do I really need to put on a suit? I'm away from friends, family and a decent coffee.

But... that's not why you take these jobs. You take the jobs that involve lots of travel because of the fascinating people you meet, engage with and work alongside. I've forced myself out of my comfort zone, dealing with new countries, cultures and creeds. It provides a perspective on your own life, views and prejudices.

You need to constantly correct yourself on how you approach men, women, families and colleagues. It's a learning experience, a lost feeling and a wonderful feeling of being lost.

You realise how little the world is and what really matters. Speaking English, currency and the Australian lifestyle are just a small piece to the puzzle. The world isn't what you see on TV, what your parents said it would be or 'like we do it back home'.

It's true, not all that glitters is gold. But this isn't a bad thing. In fact, it's the exact opposite. I am incredibly fortunate to be in Asia in my current role, doing the things I'm doing. Everyday I'm challenged, excited and doing what I'm passionate about.


Jye Smith graduated from Event Management at Macleay College in 2005. Today he is Vice-President of Digital - Asia Pacific for Weber Shandwick. Jye is based in Hong Kong and handles clients and staff across 18 regional offices, and he was also recently voted as one of Australia's top 30 under 30 people in the digital world.

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