With this interview I am starting a set of articles on expatriate success in London.
This time the interview is with Betty Encinales, a successful entrepreneur and CEO of her own company BeCruit, specialising in Finance, Economic and Technology recruitment. Betty is originally from Colombia, and moved to the UK when she was 18 years old. Today she shares with us the journey to her expatriate success in London:
What brought you to the UK?
I lived in Colombia until the age of 18, my father was a successful entrepreneur/ politician and back in the 90’s the security situation for my family was unstable, I had the opportunity to move temporarily to England and so I did.
Do you remember your first challenges?
I was shocked: the way of life is so different, everything is definitely more expensive and you feel you are nobody. I came when I was 18 and then I started living the student life, learning English, struggling a lot with the cultural differences at the beginning – I did not have friends and had to learn how to look after myself and for the very first time I became my own “cheerleader” to keep on going trough the challenging times.
You have to find your own path. The spoilt girl who I was at home: with daddy, own car, maid to clean the house, in the UK became a strong woman who had to work for every penny to survive.
I was lucky at home, but here I was also lucky to learn the small meanings of life: the meaning of a first wage and learn that everybody is equal, no matter which jobs they have, we can all have the same opportunities.
How did you overcome the challenges?
I overcome challenges by not staying still, but by working hard towards achieving my goals and believe in myself.
How did you start your road to the success?
I found a several job opportunities within the financial sector where I also had to travel and live abroad. I lived in 8 different countries including Spain, France and Mexico but England is the place where I come back. I guess because I grew up here, have my friends and company here.
Two years ago I was fed up with my job and I had a chance to move to recruitment, because I liked people and liked connecting people. And I ended up loving it. It fits perfectly my personality. I was so happy to talk to people every day. I like to develop spiritually and professionally. That job was great, because I had a meaning not just to earn money, but to change people’s lives through work.
So many people hate their jobs. They are stuck, because they do not know how to change it. I think outside the box. I help people to change that, to find what they truly love. I find the specific skills and experience what the employer really needs and connect that with the right person, even when they might not seem to be a “perfect” candidate based on initial experience. I have a talent of finding unique skills in people.
I work in finance, economic and technology recruitment, but we are looking to grow and cover more sectors, as well as open new branches abroad. If you do a good job, you can achieve BIG [results]. Everything starts with a dream – so, Dream BIG!
I have clients in the UK, France, Germany, the US and LATAM. I take 2% of the fee we charge to clients towards building a school in Colombia in a very poor area for kids who never had opportunity to go to school. That kind of charity work I want to do. Because I know what I do and where the money goes.
What is YOUR success?
Success is something different for everybody. For millionaires, when you have 5 millions, to have 1 million more, will be just another million. Success is something you cannot measure. You are successful for people around you because of who you are and what you are doing. People just should stop listening and thinking “Am I successful? Will people accept me or not?” You have to believe in who you are, follow your heart and your dreams. If you dream is working in a pub – go for it. Listen to your own voice, your own answers, achievements. To be successful is very personal and you have to listen to who you are. My success is inspiring other people trough out my job and my life – that’s when I feel successful.
What is your advice for the expatriates who would like to be successful in London?
- Never give up
On the low days put colour in your life, even if you are totally broken and think that you never gonna make it. Life comes with rainy and sunny days. You have to keep on trying and keep on going. Never give up! Life always has problems, but you can never not stop living.
- Take any opportunity, which lives brings – from small to big, “let’s try it”
Life is full of surprises:
- I have never thought I will live in London: when I was 18, I thought I will live all my life in Bogota and be a family lawyer.
- I have never thought I will work in recruitment;
- I never thought I will going to end up where I am;
- I truly believe wherever you are, you are meant to be;
- If you are open, the doors start opening to you.
- Have a passion! I love what I do – I have a lot of passion in what I am doing.
- Be motivated! I am motivated by helping people.
- Dream BIG! Why dream small? We have one life!
How to find your path?
- Believe in who you are, listen to your heart, do not listen to others.
- Get to know yourself, who you are.
- Let things be. Do not force anything what is for you. It will come naturally.
- “Sometimes the path is not clear until it becomes clear “that’s when you start finding your purpose on this earth.
Thank you, Betty, for sharing your story to the expatriate success in London and your valuable tips!
Did you enjoy this article? Share it with your friends abroad, they might also find valuable tips! 😉