Jump to content

All Activity

This stream auto-updates     

  1. Yesterday
  2. Kallas

    DV-2019

    How'd it go [at]FranetteM - hope it's good news?!
  3. Last week
  4. oscar

    DV-2019

    I enjoyed this, nicely put together. Thanks for posting.😄
  5. Heidi556

    DV-2019

    Some Youtube videos:
  6. Earlier
  7. SJ272

    DV-2019

    Molokai?! We did a snuba trip out there from Maui. I guess if you like isolation it’s a good place. Not something I could do. Beautiful, for sure.
  8. oscar

    DV-2019

    Talking about Hawaii A colleague of mine (He was the one that does not like the schools in his neighborhood) lived in Hawaii when his father was serving in the military many years ago. Well, he is contemplating moving to the Island of Molokai. He is taking two weeks vacation in September to look for a house or a smallholding. The first step is to take his laptop and see what it's like to work from there. Luckily as a work from home employee, he can do that. The cost of living is cheap on the island but there is not much there in the way of shopping or entertainment and very little in the way of medical doctors. There is a small hospital but for anything serious would have to go by ferry to Maui or Honolulu. He hopes to save money there.
  9. Heidi556

    DV-2019

    [at]Malamute Minimum wage is a number used to compare input costs. Sure it is practice to pay more, as I do in SA, and to contribute to UIF and Medi and other funds, and that it increases every year. It is a number used all over the world, no matter how harder, or labour supply, unloaded number you will find in any primary industry business plan There are actually six states with a lower unemployment rate that Hawaii, July 2019 data from Bureau of Labour Stats.
  10. I have little faith that anything will happen, but have signed.
  11. SJ272

    DV-2019

    ^ my daughter was working in a coffee shop part time when she was in high school, she was getting local minimum wage which I think was $15/hour, with tips and after deductions she was usually taking home around $20/hr. So agree that if that is the type of thing a farrmworker has as alternative- which it is in Hawaii for sure - $10/hr will be a hard sell. You just can’t translate wages from SA for many reasons, for example, cleaners here (in my area) generally get around $20/hour, sometimes even up to $25, but bear in mind that unlike SA they mostly have their own cars and lets just say their housing conditions are a lot better than average in an SA township (so rent is much higher in rand terms too). Poor in the US and poor in SA, or a working class lifestyle in the US vs SA, are totally different things.
  12. Malamute

    DV-2019

    At minimum wage - which is the lowest you may, by law, pay - you will still be paying around $10.87 an hour this year (you have to pay 1.45% of the minimum wage as the employer over to Medicare, and an additional 6.2% as social security tax) - but the minimum wage is rising to $15 per hour over the next couple of years, so that makes it $16.14 per hour.....and that is still minimum wage (farming is a LOT harder than other minimum wage jobs, so it will be a hard sell at that rate - you will likely have to offer a few $ above that to attract and retain any workers). Hawaii also has the lowest unemployment rate in the entire USA - companies really battle and compete to find workers - so the actual going wage is much higher than the minimum wage and many have to offer other benefits to have a chance of getting workers - e.g. paid time off, medical insurance etc. Even hourly Starbucks workers get that. I would double the wage calculation part of your equation at least, to be realistic. Workers are fickle for just 20c more an hour at that price point. Good luck with the nut farming.
  13. The DA is trying to improve the service to South Africans living abroad in getting a new passport quicker. Please sign the petition if you are interested. Here is the link https://petitions.da.org.za/p/capablehomeaffairsabroad
  14. Heidi556

    DV-2019

    [at]FranetteM How I decided on products, I first looked for a place that suits nut production, Hawaii is it. Also California for Almonds, and Texas for Pecans. Hawaii imports everything, apart from mac nuts, coffee, and maybe fish. And imported goods will already be ~20% more expensive from freight, and if imported from other countries, even more expensive from excise and freight. So it is a captive market if you produce locally. But it has down sides, farm labour is $10 an hour (compared to SA R18 an hour = 800% of SA rate), and land is a bit expensive.
  15. FranetteM

    DV-2019

    [at]JumpingJasonFlash Thanks for that! Brilliant! 😀
  16. FranetteM

    DV-2019

    Sadly still a week (of stress) to go. So Heidi, how did you decide on which products to try and farm in USA? Is it intended for local use or export? Is any of these trade war rediculousnous influencing your decisions?
  17. Heidi556

    DV-2019

    [at]FranetteM You are probably at your interview now, let us know how it went!
  18. This is so right! Unless you have a VERY heavy accent, I wouldn’t stress about trying to change it too much. As Malamute said, more often than not Americans absolutely LOVE hearing a different “exotic” accent. Forcing yourself to sound like an American never works, you more often than not, just end up sounding like Gru from Despicable Me, and even if you happen to nail the accent you’ll almost certainly trip up on the American words, phrases or names. Best stick to what you’re comfortable with and own it! Make it your own and embrace your “foreignness”. Whenever I have mentioned to friends, colleagues and even complete strangers that I forget just HOW different I sound and that I probably should work more on sounding more “local”, they quite literally beg me not to. They really do love hearing the different “exotic” accent and love that we use different “fancy” words for almost everything! I’ve had at least half a dozen people ask me to record voice mail messages for them to impress their friends. My wife’s entire office and nearly all of her 30 staff members now naturally say things in conversation like “dodgy”, “crap”, “rubbish”, “lovely”, “just now”, plus a litany of random Afrikaans words and a whole bunch of very British ones too. I’ve even noticed that the vocabulary of our friends and colleagues has improved dramatically over the years and in some cases expanded. It is truly quite amazing what a little bit of diversity can do. Most important though, is just being understood. 99% of that is just using the American English words instead of the British English words. You simply don’t realize just how many words are different, until you have to actually use them to be understood. I used to think American English was only slightly different, maybe 30-50 words and then some slightly different spellings eg. “z” instead of “s”, “color” not “colour”, “aluminum” not “aluminium” etc. Not even close! In some ways it really is a completely different language. The weird thing is that growing up with American TV, Music, Movies and media we already know almost all of these names and words, we just never used any of them. The best part of having an accent is that you get a LOT more slack and people are generally a lot more forgiving, receptive, understanding, and considerate. It’s like playing stupid, instead you still come across as intelligent, only different. I once got out of a traffic ticket because I sounded foreign and the officer cut me a break because I accidentally said kilometers instead of miles. Hahaha! Also, whenever i’m dealing with people in customer support, banks, information desks, reception, on the telephone, etc. and don't quite know the procedure, need help, or just have a question, I just say something in my best South African accent like, “Excuse me. You might have noticed, but l’m not from around here... and I really have no idea how this is supposed to work...” and they laugh with genuine delight and more often than not make a concerted effort to explain things in great detail, go out of their way to be as helpful as possible, and often cut you some serious slack, when they’d normally cut off or shut down the average customer. It really is like a secret weapon in many cases. Your accent will naturally change over time as you learn to stretch out your words and slow down your speech. The hard ‘g’s and rolling ‘r’s will soften, and the quick and flat “a”s will become more accented and drawn out with time and you’ll start to naturally pronounce many words and names the American way, especially the American ones, which you’ll use more and more. So much so that your South African friends and family will start commenting that you “...sound so American!” I realized just this on our recent visit to SA this April. I was talking to my daughter on a swing in Durban (where I grew up) and the mother next to me turned around and asked me where I was from! The exact same question I get almost every single day (sometimes 5 times a day) in the US. That’s when I realized than I now officially have an accent without a home, as I like to say. I sound foreign to Americans and I sound foreign to South Africans. Hahaha! In short... just be yourself. Embrace your accent and incredibly unique foreignness. Unless you are intending to act in Hollywood or host a TV show, going full Charlize Theron is just a complete waste of time, effort and money. If anything, it might even work against you, as you’ll often be treated like every other American. Unless they already personally know another South African, the vast majority of Americans effectively have absolutely no preconceived ideas or stereotypes associated with South Africans. Especially negative ones! Unlike, they do for so many of the other larger immigrant populations that they might otherwise perceive in a negative way. This lack of preconceived ideas tends to make them more accepting, welcoming, friendly, and genuinely curious towards us. And that goes a really long way in most cases.
  19. SJ272

    DV-2019

    They also tend to say “store” rather than “shop”. and btw if someone asks you for your “autograph”, they are not being funny or cute, many use it interchangeably with “signature”.
  20. oscar

    DV-2019

    Well, they feel saying "going to the shops" Tends to sounds so British. Americans tend to be more specific and say " I'm going to Duane Reade to pick up a few things. ( Duane Reade is a pharmacy chain in NY similar to CVS )
  21. FranetteM

    DV-2019

    Ok, so I don't get that one? What are you supposed to say? 🙂
  22. SJ272

    DV-2019

    And don’t tell your workmates you’ll meet them in the “canteen”...it’s the cafeteria. The canteen is what you drink from
  23. oscar

    DV-2019

    When I tell my secretary at lunchtime that I'm:" going out to the shops"... she cracks up and finds it hysterical.
  24. Malamute

    DV-2019

    I have found that people really enjoy a different accent - and in all of my work environments, there has been not just acceptance of it, but appreciation. Diversity is highly valued in most US workforces - companies have a big focus on it. I once presented to a group along with some of my colleauges (who famously gave me an English>American dictionary as a joke gift), and said something like 'nought to 100' instead of 'zero to 100' - and I saw my colleagues crack up. I later asked them whether I should focus on using the US lingo - and they all said 'NO' - they all understood what I meant, and it was refreshing to hear things differently. That said, I have changed much of my vocab (post has become mail, queue has become line, lift has become elevator and so on) just because that is what you hear all around. Subtle changes to accent too - as SJ272 says, with the 'Rs'. Don't however, try and cultivate an American accent - it will come off as phony - and is totally unnecessary.
  25. SJ272

    DV-2019

    ^ I think summer Friday’s are catching on more and more. At my husband’s previous company, they had them all the way from Memorial Day to Labor Day! It’s also a lot more accepted to do work from home here, at least in the Bay Area. Many companies officially have wfh Fridays. Friend of mine lectures at a local university (came here on a work visa to do so, so jumped right in) and also had a bit of a learning curve with words. I don’t think it’s that critical that you need to wait a few years, but getting a voice coach actually is a good idea if you want to do something like that. The other thing is to pronounce your Rs - like in water, forty, over etc where saffers tend to pronounce as though it’s silent/h! Otherwise you may get blank stares! Also, at a supermarket, they won’t know what you mean if you say trolley - it’s a cart! Lots of these little ones to learn. You can usually figure out what other people mean, but they can’t always figure out what you mean!
  26. oscar

    DV-2019

    Good Morning Franette ! its Summer fun Friday so I'm feeling great ( During the summer months we only work half days on Friday 8-12) this only applies to the months of July and August. Summer Fun Days are not offered by many companies, but its catching on as more companies transition to casual Fridays. You also don't get much vacation time here so any bit of extra time is a huge gift. If your husband gets a job with benefits you certainly can be added to his health insurance together with any siblings. It works both ways if you were to be the sole income earner your husband and siblings could go on your insurance. I'm sure you could eventually become a trainer but give it a few years to learn the local lingo. We need to find out who Charlize Theron's voice coach was. She perfected it but does slip occasionally. and get some lessons. When I speak to family in SA They say what's with the phony language. Interestingly people in the office have commented when I go back to SA on vacation and get back in the office after three weeks, they say I sound more South African again, something that I did not notice. What I do notice when I get back I always tend to get into the wrong side of the car. When writing letters I suggest you add Grammarly to your computer it helps with writing in American.
  27. FranetteM

    DV-2019

    Thank you [at]oscar and [at]SJ272 for your valuable input. It gives me a lot to think about. So, regarding benefits - if my husband is employed with benefits, does it mean that I can latch onto that for medical (like in SA)? Yes, Oscar, I get your point regarding the accent. I didn't think of that before, but I can imagine how that may be a problem. I'm actually practicing my American English, also need to be aware of the different words that can make a huge difference, for example we went to Hershey Park with American friends and I was saying how long the "Q's" were and just got blank stares 😂 Only realised later that they talk about a "line" and not a "Q". Can't anticipate everything though, will have to learn as we go along. Regarding the tours - my idea is not to open a travel agency per se. Like SJS272 said - it's more about getting a group of people travelling together that doesn't want to bother with self drive. For example, I used to have clients from Canada that visited SA once a year and they would book my tour bus upfront for about a week. So I'll do all the driving. Airport transfers, daily excursions wherever they wanted to go, Dinner transfers, Tours, etc. Yes, they were wealthy, but what people don't realize, is that if you're a group and you split the costs, it is not so expensive per person and better to hire a bus with a driver than to rent 2 or 3 cars and then they have to drive on the 'wrong' side of the road as well. Also, the way it works is that the clients don't pay me any commission - I negotiate better rates with my network partners. The clients don't pay extra than what they would have if they have booked online. In many cases, I can actually reduce the cost for them and they get the benefit of having a tailor made tour. The 'challenge' here for me was that wealthy clients actually don't really care about the cost (especially if they earn $), and trying to convince people that they can actually save money doing it this way without it being a scam is really tricky to market.
  28. SJ272

    DV-2019

    I think like with travel agents, the Internet has taken the place of a lot of recruiting business. Millions of candidates are on LinkedIn, zip recruiter, etc that HR departments can zero in on exactly what they’re looking for, whereas recruiters often do a “spray and pray” approach of tossing everything in hoping something works, or like the ones I mentioned above who send unsolicited resumes to companies advertising publicly. We used a recruiter at the company I worked for back in SA and I still don’t know why, they never did anything we couldn’t have done for ourselves imo. And almost all the senior hires were never advertised but interviewed through networking, of course the market in SA is much, much smaller so that’s easier.
  1. Load more activity
×
×
  • Create New...