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Job opportunities with Hungarian-Swedish-English languages in Poland?

kb2011 1 | 14
30 Aug 2011 #1
I am seriously considering to work in Poland and wonder if you think
I have any chances finding a job with Hungarian, Swedish and English
language skills. I am a Hungarian resident but would be willing to relocate.

Where would you start?

Thanks in advance for any advice.
30 Aug 2011 #2
I should think so, kb2011! Oh, and I'd DEFINITELY learn at least some Polish while living in the country. Relying on even an impressive cache of languages as English, Swedish and Hungarian might get you only so far-:):)LOL

Probably, the local consulary offices in your home city would be the best place to begin and scope out an intelligent job search. In my case anyhow, that's what I did umpteen years back when I was looking for related employment in The Federal Republic of Germany! Then however, without a solid working knowledge of the local lingo, I'd have been (literally) dead in the water, I'm tellin' ya right now!!

Udvozlom es minden jot kivanok! Valkomna hit och lycka till! Witaj i powodzenia! Welcome and all the very best! Sei doch herzlich Willkommen und viel Erfolg!
James UK - | 1
31 Aug 2011 #3
I have just arrived in Poland, currently in Krakow, and I'm looking for an English teaching position (TESOL/INTESOL certified). Would Wroclaw be a better area to start out ... or any other city/town? I also have an extensive background in film and TV production. What is the best way to go about finding a position ... e-mail or dropping off Profile/Resume personally? Any positive and constructive suggestions would be much appreciated.


delphiandomine 85 | 18,359
31 Aug 2011 #4
Krakow? Forget about it, you and ten thousand others are looking for work. If you want a job, head to the small cities and towns - places like Zielona Gora, Rzeszow, Bydgoszcz are screaming for native speakers.
PWEI 3 | 612
31 Aug 2011 #5
currently in Krakow, and I'm looking for an English teaching position (TESOL/INTESOL certified). Would Wroclaw be a better area to start out ... or any other city/town?

Krakow is the worst city in Poland to get a teaching job in: absolutely anywhere else will be better. Your major problem is that you don't have a CELTA (or equivalent) and thus lack the main thing which Polish schools want. Sorry but your INTESOL certificate isn't worth the paper that it is printed on; any school which will employ people who have only that type of certification will also employ 'teachers' who have no qualifications at all. On the bright side, now is by far the best time of year to be looking for a teaching job.
OP kb2011 1 | 14
2 Sep 2011 #6
Of course I would learn Polish, I would not want to move around without speaking the language.

Thanks for the advice, and Witam! by the way - this is the first Polish word I learned-It is important to
be courteous.
2 Sep 2011 #7 important as the first magyar words I ever learned when I was on a business trip to Budapest; "Tessek!" = Proszę!, "Koszonom!" = Dziękuję! etc...

Politeness there too I found exceptionally important, particularly among the elderly-:)) I remembered when meeting the wife of our much older chairperson, I had to greet her (a woman of approx. 75 at the time!) with a "Kezicsokolom!", which, coming from the North Germanic culture seemed totally weird for me. Apparently, even a simple, jaunty "Jo estet (kivanok)!" = Dobry wieczór! wasn't quite enough:)))

Poland is much closer though in manners to Hungary than to Sweden, where excessive liberalism almost amounts to a flippant lack of respect for everybody, including the elderly.
OP kb2011 1 | 14
3 Sep 2011 #8
Yes, it seems that a simple Good evening won't get you too far in certain areas of Hungary, this is great :)). Ok. but when was this, in the 80s? Even then, it was not obligatory to use this greeting. Maybe in that particular case it was beneficial from the business point of view, but it is not a rule. Earlier, this was a complimentary way of greeting women. It comes from German "Kisstihand" which was actually used in the German form until about WWII.

Today, from a young person saying this to me it is a sign of being slightly artificial, I was greeted with Kézcsók-abbrievated form of Kezitcsókolom! by a business partner about 6 month ago but I told him to switch to casual because we were approximately the same age. Maybe for someone who is older it is a compliment.

As for the Swedish ignorance, I don't think you can generalize, but I think there is a relieving simplicity and directness in communication between people (no kisstihands).

What I meant by being polite is I think it is important to show politeness towards the locals when you are from another country.
3 Sep 2011 #9
Absolutely right! I concur with your last statement wholeheartedly. And yet, the cross-cultural differences are often soooo irreconcilable, I wonder, especially with English, whether the supposed internationality of this language almost feeds a false sense of self-confidence in living briefly abroad, i.e. "Since everybody must understand what I'm saying, how could there be any problems?", wherein is the rub; Swedes will communicate (logically enough) in English with Poles and Hungarians, thinking that their Northern-style directness is getting through, where many times, it really isn't.
3 Sep 2011 #10
Apropos the "German 'Kuess die Hand', Polish too has 'Całuję pani rączki' = Jag kyssar fr._________hand etc..., but in my experience it is rarely used anymore nowadays, save for the most formal of diplomatic functions and the like-:) Like the Swedish third person address, it's going the way of the horse-drawn carriage LOL
OP kb2011 1 | 14
4 Sep 2011 #11
Like the Swedish third person address, it's going the way of the horse-drawn carriage

Yes and part of the simplicitiy and directness - and by that I don't mean rudeness at all- is due to the fact that many things have gone the way of the horse drawn carriage and this saves at lot of energy when communicating.

Obviously, when you use the communication codes and rules of your native language in English, it will not necessarily be popular for others with a different cultural background, but this applies to other nationalities as well, not only Swedes.

Another thing that came to my mind reading that you were told to say Kezitcsókolom is the many 'rules' -and myths- foreigners are told by which they should behave in Hungary which actually don't apply..
4 Sep 2011 #12
A point well taken.

As far though as the "energy when communicating" which you mention, I find that least, that this is energy is usually effort well spent in the long run! As you've probably noticed, language (not merely English) is no longer at the premium it once was and, like Swedish, Hungarian, German, Polish etc..., runs the tragic risk of being enveloped in a tossed salad of international globish, without texture, without rhythm, e.g. in essence, without "Englishness", "Swedishness", "Hungarianess" etc...which distinguishes it from other languages.

As local tradition becomes globalized, the human brains becomes lazier and less supple. Is this really desirable, even in the name of business??!
noreenb 7 | 557
4 Sep 2011 #13

Bydgoszcz is not a small city.
It's 8th largest city in Poland, the population is 358 thousands habitants.
There are many English language schools, two English colleages, that's probably the reason why you can have an impression that it's screaming for foreigners.
delphiandomine 85 | 18,359
4 Sep 2011 #14
Bydgoszcz is not a small city.

Oh yes it is - it's very much a "forgotten" city in Poland.

It's 8th largest city in Poland, the population is 358 thousands habitants.

True, but it's still a nowhereville.

There are many English language schools, two English colleages, that's probably the reason why you can have an impression that it's screaming for foreigners.

No, the impression that it's screaming for foreigners is simply the fact that it's not a particularly attractive place to go for "teachers". I'm telling you this based on personal knowledge - people just don't want to live in Bydgoszcz.
noreenb 7 | 557
4 Sep 2011 #15
Yes, I agree with you.
It's a place where live a lot of retired and old people. Many young around 20-30 go away from Bydgoszcz to bigger cities in Poland or abroad.
OP kb2011 1 | 14
5 Sep 2011 #16
language (not merely English) is no longer at the premium it once was

I agree 100%

Is this really desirable, even in the name of business??!

No, it isn't but that's life-in the global world :). I agree that every language should preserve its uniqueness. There are
things you are able to express in one language that can not be interpreted to another.

In general, I think the globalisation's influence on the language affects people who take part in the global communication. Many people in Hungary, for example,

don't speak any foreign language at all. It is mostly the younger generation that uses globish but I don't see it as something threatening everyday language, do you? I think globish is mainly limited to business context. One thing that does influence everyday language, however, is the media.

And in Sweden, for example, the Language Council (Språkrådet) issues a list of the most popular newly created Swedish words annually.
5 Sep 2011 #17
"Many people in Hungary, for example, don't speak any foreign langauge at all."

....But I'll betcha dollars to donuts that those who DO know it quite well indeed! Same here in the States. Most Yankee-Doodle Americans wouldn't know a foreign tongue if they tripped and fell over it, yet, those of us who were language majors, minority though that we are, speak a number of languages fluently-:)

Recently, a foreign-born gentleman (and an immigrant to boot, I'll have you know!) saw me hunched over my pc in the library alongside my wife and daughter, studying my Polish rather intently. "VVaj you arrr lairrnink Polish lonkvitch? Eengleesh nawtt goot enahff forr you?", to which I calmly replied, "Fine, sir? So when d'you want to start learning it?" He shut up immiediately and walked away.

Moral of the story? This all may well be "life in the global world" as you say, but can't, indeed oughtn't, we at least strive to do better? The answer's of course a resounding YES!
OP kb2011 1 | 14
6 Sep 2011 #18
Most Yankee-Doodle Americans wouldn't know a foreign tongue if they tripped and fell over it

But Spanish is a popular language in the States?

I had an boss from North America, who, after spending two years in Hungary was not able show Budapest on the Hungary map and,
Hungary is not a big country so the map of Hungary is not big and the capital city is usually the biggest dark spot on every map :). Anyway.

He did not remember my last name after I have worked for him for months...I was thinking of a nice long swearing afterwards- something

Hungarian language is exceptionally rich in.

"Fine, sir? So when d'you want to start learning it?"


The answer's of course a resounding YES!

I agree, and this is the reason why I don't mind if Pista bácsi (uncle Stephen) in the countryside
does not speak English.
6 Sep 2011 #19
Hooray to you and "Pista bacsi" videkben-:))

Kitchen Spanish is indeed popular here in the US, you're quite correct (...and that's regrettably about all!)LOL Other than that, I, with my relative survival Spanish had to practically interpret for my colleagues on a trip to Spain some years ago. After "Donde esta el banyo?" (Hol van a v c?/ Hvor ar toiletten? Gdzie jest wc?) = Where's the loo?, they were helplessly lost.

The Budapester all understood quite good German (far better than English!) when I was there. The Debrecener on the other hand put me through my paces and I definitely would have needed an interpreter had I stayed there longer than 24 hours. Luckily, my Hungarian was just enough for those purposes. As in Prague, the older people seemed quite comfortable with German and spoke it with unusually literary fluency.

Your boss, by the way, is all too typical of American bosses; economically wealthy, intellectually and socially impovrished!

A snob? You bet your bottom dollar. Maybe if more of us Yanks turned snobbish once again, we'd be better off, i.e. more competitive and less mentally lazy. Snobs do challenge us to do more, since we hate their guts so much, they might make us mad enough to change-:)

Tragi-comic update on that foreign English speaker from my previous post. Turns out he was actually an out-of-work ESL instructor (surprise, surprise!) , just recently let go from his jobLOL

Is that typical of globalization or what? Someone not even conversant in English teaching it to the unsuspecting!
OP kb2011 1 | 14
7 Sep 2011 #20
Your Hungarian is good :). Yes, German is very popular, there are a lot of German/Austrian companies in Hungary,
I also learned German in high school but was never too interested then. I watch a few German TV-channels
(they are very high quality, by the way) and understand about 80%.

On you being snobbish, I was thinking exactly the same thing, that the man in the library most probably
thought you were a snob. Not only do you speak English, ON TOP OF IT you learn Polish.

Also, it would be unfair if I did not mention that I met quite a few nice people from the US but they were
mostly artists and/or were interested in Hungary or were married with a Hungarian or ran a long-term
business in the country.

Yes, it is quite surprising that someone who actually would need to learn a language teaches it to others.
8 Sep 2011 #21
>Your Hungarian is good-:)<

Koszi! Magyarorszagon voltam, de csak Budapesten es Debrecenben es MINDEN ember jol beszelt nemetul! [Still forget whether, as in Polish, certain plural pronouns agree in the plural which take plural endings or not, sajnos, so sorry]

In deference to the Hungarians, I'm sure that in order to teach Hungarian in any reputable Hungarian school, academy, college or language institute, the teacher's native tongue must be Hungarian, or at the very native bilingual Hungarian. Pity that global English isn't accorded the same respect in this country, where, the last time I checked, English was the mother tongue LOL
8 Sep 2011 #22
Learn Esperanto. It will certainly make you feel at home in a very different country.
8 Sep 2011 #23
Yes, but in whose home? -:))

It's really a kind of joke language, now isn't it? Like Volapuk and a number of other artifical languages, I've found it's more confined to mensa types, language freak linguist geeks etc.. Really think you can get off the plane and land in Wrocław, for example, and ask for directions in Esperanto?? They'd all answer you in English probably.

Trust you were kidding. That's ok LOL
OP kb2011 1 | 14
10 Sep 2011 #24
No really, your Hungarian sentence is correct, no plural needed, there are only two minor things I would change: the word order at the beginning of the sentence, 'Voltam Magyarországon' and maybe you could use 'jártam' instead of 'voltam'.

The sentence "Pista bácsi vidékben" would be "vidéken" ('down the countryside') but is it is such a minor grammatical thing that it would not be worth

mentioning and the correct form becomes automatic when someone is interacting with Hungarians. The fact that someone without Hungarian background speaks
this much Hungarian is something I appreciate when I hear it, it is not an easy language to learn.

No, I can not imagine someone teaching Hungarian who is not a native speaker.
10 Sep 2011 #25
Glad to see you and I look to be on the same wave length thus far, at least insofar as regards pedagogical standards-:)
To be honest, we had at our college once a young male Hungarian-born English instructor whose language skills nearly knocked my socks off!!! I walked into the office humming some obscure ditty from the British music hall era and this fellow began mouthing the words to the song in practically perfect lip synch. I was stunned. When I made certain references to American authors and their styles, he knew both the authors as well as the style. Aside from the slightest trace of an accent, such as when pronouncing words with a schwa-glide or unvoiced '-uh' sound, he was indistinguishable from a native English speaker!

Then again, my standards, especially for today, are rather high-:)
OP kb2011 1 | 14
10 Sep 2011 #26
There is a link between musical skills and language skills I think and probably that's the reason why he did the perfect lip synch.

High standards for your native language? It is absolutely normal.

I was thinking about where I could imagine Esperanto as an official language and came up with the EU headquarters. Still, I don't think

anyone speaks Esperanto there..

I am glad I registered to this forum, I am learning a lot from reading the threads, many topics are so different from what is discussed

in Hungary.
11 Sep 2011 #27
"High standards for your native language.......?"

Regrettably, it's hardly "normal" here in New York City, where deal-making skill among foreigners (especially certain groups such as Albanians, Russians and Bukhori speakers!!) easily trumps target language proficiency for the ESL-mafiosi of the world!

As far as English becoming the universal cesspool, I continually refer from time to time to a sign I once observed hanging over a London bookshop some years ago: BROKEN ENGLISH SPOKEN PERFECTLY. LOL A sad joke, even back then, and a crueler irony these days as well.
11 Sep 2011 #28
Quick question for kb2011. Do you speak/know Swedish as well as you apparently know English?

Jag bodde en sommar i Goteborg, Sverige och mina svenskkundskaper var redan naagot bra, men jag fand maanga tonaarige, som ville hellere tala engelska an svenska med utlanningar! Det var ju frustrerande.

I spent (lived) for a summer in Gothenberg Sweden and my knowledge of Swedish was already quite good, but I found many teens who'd rather speak English with foreigners than Swedish. It was really frustrating.

Probably it's the same in many countries, but I though that at least business people would have spoken better English than was the case. In Hungary and in Poland, on the other hand, the quality of English was like peaks and valleys, ranging from superior to awful. But we already talked about that before-:))
OP kb2011 1 | 14
11 Sep 2011 #29
I speak Swedish better than English.
12 Sep 2011 #30
Hmmm, yes I thought as much-:))

Interesting that in almost every country (including of course Poland, Sweden and Hungary!), only a native speaker teaches the national language of that particular country, e.g. Polish, Swedish or Hungarian, as we both agree is only fitting and proper. On the other hand, practically any lamo off the street with a degree from a local university can teach English in prmary schools, although they are scarcely native to the language. While Spanish, French or Chinese are far more universal languages than Polish or certainly Swedish, why such a common, that is, low, standard for English?? I believe that native US or Canadian-born and educated teachers should be the ones permitted to teach the English language in European schools. This is bureaucratically not feasible, I realize, but it's definitely somethiing to aim for, don't you think??

On a related thread, I know for a fact that the requirements for teaching a foreign language here in the United States, i.e. a language other than English, are native or bilingual fluency in the language of instruction. For instance, I could teach either English or German, since I can prove native to bilingual ability in both languages, but I could NEVER teach Swedish or Polish as I'm not a native speaker of either language ( matter how fluently I know or think I know them)-:)

Sort of a double standard here.

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