(Not) Lost in Translation: Why the Local Language is Key for Your Career

July 12, 2022

Making it in Austria

Recently, the WU Executive Academy organized its Virtual Career Days for the third time in a row. In the course of this alumni career event, the community engagement team matched 20 career partners in 152 twenty-minute consultation slots with currents students and alumni to answer their personal career questions. Topics like networking, CV, Linkedin profile as well as goals and inspirations for the next career step have been some of the most covered topics. Many international community members showed interest in starting a career in Austria so it was great to have several experts especially on this topic on site.

Keyboard with Austria as right shift key
Career partners and experts gave tips for topics like networking and career progression.

Sprechen Sie Deutsch?

A question asked in almost all of the counseling interviews: If I want to make a career in Austria, how important is it that I can also speak German?

We therefore wanted to take up this question again and asked 3 experts from the Alumni and Career Partner Network of the WU Executive Club, who have been dealing with this important career topic for a long time:


Mae Leyrer, Executive Confidant, decision-making expert, and language talent is also President of the International Advisory Board of the WU Executive Academy and Global Executive MBA Alumna. Mae has lived and worked in many countries. A few years ago, her path led her to Austria, where she now lives with her family.

In the interview, she talks about her personal experiences with the topic and what it's like to have already lived and worked on three continents and in seven countries. The former CEO also explains why speaking the local language is not only an important competitive advantage, but also has an important cultural and, above all, integrative character.

Read the Interview with Mae Leyrer here.

Katerina Vollmann portrait

Katerina Vollmann, Principal at Kienbaum Consultants Austria GmbH, and long-time Career Partner of the WU Executive Club.

Katerina knows from her own experience what it means to move to another country to live and work. As an experienced executive search expert, she understands very well why the language is not only a gateway to the culture and the people of a country, but can also be a launching pad for a successful career beyond the international community and the "expat bubble".

Read the career insights from Katerina Vollmann here


Adela Mehic-Dzanic, has 8+ years of international experience in leading sales and business development in the telecommunication and Internet of Things industry. The Professional MBA Entrepreneurship & Innovation alumna is also former Vice President of the WU EA Female Leaders Network.

As part of her "Making it in Austria" initiative, Adela has spoken to countless people who - like her a few years ago - want to come to Austria to live and work here

Why she is firmly convinced that languages change us as human beings and why she created the "Making it in Austria" community, Adela tells here.

Read more about the "Making it in Austria" community.

Share this