Have you been lucky enough to secure a sabbatical? If you have, make sure you take full advantage of your career break! If you”ve never even heard of a sabbatical, read on to find out why it”s something you should consider.
This type of break is an agreement between you and your employer that you can take a period longer than your usual annual leave allowance off work – typically around 12 months – with the guarantee that your job will be waiting for you when you return.
Some employers even offer paid career breaks, although this typically means you will have to spend some of your time off gaining qualifications or work experience. In my opinion, this is no bad thing as having a year away from the office means you have plenty of time to dedicate to bettering yourself.
Learn a language
Getting to grips with a new language is an extremely worthwhile thing to do with your time off work. Communication technology ranging from videoconferencing to Facebook has meant the world has got a lot smaller.
As a result, for a business to truly perform in the international marketplace, it is vital employees are able to communicate with potential clients and customers overseas. By learning a new language, you could really set yourself apart from your colleagues by providing your employer with a useful skills set.
If your company has dealings with North and South America, it is well worth being able to speak Spanish. Even in the US, many people are able to speak this language, as it is the national dialect of nearby countries
like Costa Rica and Ecuador.
You could spend some of your break learning Spanish and arrive back at the office with a new and valuable talent that your employer will be able to take advantage of. It may also prove useful if you are considering spreading your wings and taking the next step on your career ladder, as it will mark you out from other candidates.
Of course, you”ll also be able to speak Spanish when you”re in Spain, which will make it easier for you to conduct business there – and communicate with the locals even when you”re on !
Take language lessons abroad
There is no better way to learn a language than to take classes in the country it is spoken natively. By doing this, you have ample opportunity to put your skills to the test even when you”re not in the classroom, such as by visiting a local market or a restaurant.
Take Spanish classes in Ecuador and when you”re not in a lesson you”ll be able to explore the country”s bustling capital city Quito. You could also spend a few weeks on the Galapagos Islands, where Charles Darwin famously conducted research on the unique animals that live there while he was establishing his evolutionary theories.
Guatemala is another great place to learn Spanish. You”ll be situated in the heart of Antigua, a world heritage site and firm favourite with travellers visiting Central America. Exploring further afield will also allow you to visit Mayan ruins like El Mirador and Tikal.
Alternatively, consider Costa Rica as the base for your learning. The rich biodiversity of this beautiful country means you”re certain to want to schedule in a few weeks to explore the natural environment. Even wandering through the rainforest, you”ll probably have plenty of opportunities to test out your new Spanish skills.