The last week in country is here and I have learned so much about how the Spainsh people live! Each day there was an experience to be had and lesson to be learned.
The question posed is an interesting one. I believe it is hard to say how the Spanish define success in a professional sense. There are many variables that go into being successful in the Spanish workforce. If you are under the age of 28, having a job is considered a “success”. The unemployment rate in Spain is above the roof. The unemployment rate is more than 14%. That gap is primarily being taken upon the younger generation out of school. It is very common for people to live with their parents until the age of 30 due to the cost of their own place. Therefore, being able to maintain any job that provides a steady income would be considered successful.
Spain is a very funny place, well Madrid is a particular place. The residents of Madrid are very posh. The cost of living for the neighborhoods in Madrid is one of the highest in Europe. This falls under the “social success” category but also pertains to the professional success; In the United States, you can look at people on the train or subway and have a rough idea of what type of job they work and see whether they are successful or not. However, here everyone is always dressed to the nines. It is very difficult to draw a conclusion on what their profession is on the train because everyone dresses similarly no matter the job or income.
I work in the hospitality industry, which directly translates into being people-friendly. You cannot have a future or career in the hospitality industry without enjoying time with strangers. From the receptionists, cleaners to the general manager, everyone interacts with guests daily. I do not work on the front lines per say, I am in an office in the back of the hostel. Each day an issue arises where my coworkers or myself need to step and solve a problem for a guest. How to be successful in this industry is simple: be a people person, and help others out. You will find plenty of success in the industry if you are able to converse with many poele and have a good attitude about most things. In my opinion, money will not define how successful you are, it is defined to me as how much you are able to offer and your effect on others. If you make a lot of money but also make everyone around you miserable, you are not successful; you are an ass. If you can find the even keeled making money and making others happy, then you are successful. I would define each worker in Cats as successful because they are always joyful and ready for a great time.
The American workforce in general is more cutthroat and intense than the Spanish. In the United States you have to outwork many people in order to obtain a promotion and things of that sort. However, in Spain, the people are more relaxed, they work hard, but they have a more relaxed perspective on life. I think successful employees here are less boastful. Here, other than the dressing up, most people seem down to earth and let life take its course. In the united states, if you’re doing well with work, you aren’t afraid to show your lavish tastes. You make sure everyone knows you’re successful in life, flaunting new cars, clothes, materialistic things.
Many aspects of the Spanish lifestyle are more appealing than the life of an American. One of which is working in a more relaxed environment with people who want to help rather than look out for their own success.