‘I found my marketing internship through Make it in the North’ – Subhajit finds a new path

Determined to follow his passion and carve out a new path for himself, follow Subhajit's journey as he ditched his 9-5 research job and pursued a role as a digital marketing intern at EasyToys.

Subhajit Expanded Hr Min

Make it in the North (MIITN) had a stimulating chat with Subhajit Sarkar who is currently a digital marketing intern at EasyToys in Groningen. Subhajit holds an MSc degree in human physiology and hails from Kolkata, India. Subhajit shared his compelling story of transitioning from a research role in India to pursuing a business administration degree online and embarking on a digital marketing internship at EasyToys.

Transitioning to a new culture and career path at EasyToys

EasyToys is a company committed to normalising sexuality and goes by the “work hard, play hard” motto and their goal is to have a positive impact on the sexual well-being of as many people as possible.

Asked about his journey from India to life as an intern with EasyToys, Subhajit had the support of his wife who was already living in Groningen. “I moved to Groningen with my wife after her doctoral studies. Now, I am pursuing a business administration degree because I actually wanted to make a shift in my career. I’m pursuing my degree online and I’m working at EasyToys as a digital marketing trainee,” he told Make it in the North.

Subhajit expressed the importance of networking as the key strategy to find out what his next step would be when he moved to Groningen. “The first thing I had to do is to find the networks because that is super important here.” Subhajit emphasised the significance of networking, stating, “I started trying to get people who know other people and who had ideas about job openings.”

From professional work to internship

Embracing the transition from five years of professional work to an internship provided Subhajit with the motivation to change career paths. Regarding his transition from a research role to marketing, Subhajit expressed, “I was really interested to take another chance with something different,” he says. “So my work was previously related to mode of behaviour and the study of behaviours in animals. But I was more interested in doing something which is more applied sense of behaviour, like marketing where we actually use human behaviour, and try to understand how a fellow human being thinks and try to deliver something based on that,” he added.

He noted the similarities of his previous work to his internship, but also recognised the importance of getting to know the basics of digital marketing first. “So although I believe I may have the understanding of what the job entails, but to actually have the technicalities of the job, I cannot just say, you know hire me. Because there is no reason anybody will. Acknowledging the need for continuous learning, Subhajit stated, “I have to learn the terminology and parameters of what is required of the job. I have to first start with the basics and I'm never tired of learning.”

Tips for international success

Utilizing the Make it in the North platform proved beneficial in helping Subhajit find the right internship. Subhajit shared his approach to finding opportunities, saying, “First I went to the Make it in the North job and internship board and I also went to the International Welcome Center North (IWCN). I was looking for something that aligned to my long term goals and that is when I found the digital marketing internship. I was like, yeah, why not! Let’s give it a try since the company welcomed English speaking applicants. I took a shot and yeah, it worked out!”

He also provided some helpful integration tips for Asians who may be unfamiliar with the Dutch working culture. “The first suggestion I’ll give is networking, because we are really poor at that. In our work culture it is an integral part of your work ethic to be very focused on your work, which is very different here. It is also very important that you integrate with your colleagues and talk to others instead of just focusing only on the task at hand.”

Although the Dutch language is not a work requirement, Subhajit expressed an interest in learning the language to help integrate with his new colleagues. Expressing the importance of language integration, Subhajit mentioned, “I think it’s better if you speak a little Dutch. I think it’s a sign of respect and it helps with integrating with the work culture.

While he’s thankful for working for a company that’s accommodating in terms of language, he said he has “many friends who work in similar kinds of companies” but face greater pressure to work in Dutch very early on leading them to not be able to fully participate in the company.

Subhajit also explained that when he comes across job vacancies that are written only in Dutch he assumes the job is only suitable for Dutch speakers, which sometimes isn’t the case. This may be helpful for companies to keep in mind when they’re advertising open positions.

Using Make it in the North

Subhajit believes he’ll be using the Make it in the North platform once again if he’s ever looking for a full-time position in the North of the Netherlands. He thinks the platform is an important resource for fellow internationals.

“It’s very important because it filters jobs that suit internationals. That’s step one. And secondly, I know of many jobs that are on Make it in the North but they aren’t on LinkedIn. So the use of LinkedIn here is restricted because sometimes people don’t post jobs on LinkedIn or at least not internships,” Subhajit said. He added that in the Randstad cities, LinkedIn is more popular.

Subhajit's journey highlights the importance of taking chances and continuously learning in the pursuit of personal and professional growth. As he weaves through the challenges of transitioning from a professional role to an internship, Subhajit not only shares practical tips for international success but also emphasises the significance of language integration and genuine connections.