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Expat living in Slovenia – hit or miss?

Thursday 15 Oct 2020

Diversity was high on the agenda at UniCredit Bank in Slovenia, as the bank's D&I Week event saw online discussion about expat life in Slovenia and how to make people from abroad feel welcome

Diversity is a great source of progress and development. Promoting inclusion is the true key to unlock the potential of diverse teams and ideas.

During the D&I Week in Slovenia, ‘real-life’ experiences represented the common thread of all the debates and provided a unique opportunity to tackle topics from the employee’s point of view. The discussion “Foreigners in Slovenia – Legal Aliens” was hosted by three foreign colleagues currently working in Slovenian bank. They were joined by about 30 colleagues from different parts of the Bank.

Colleagues from abroad shared that the decision to change location was mostly driven by the job opportunity, as well as having positive views on the country before coming to Slovenia. They described the country as green, clean and beautiful, while as they expected the locals to be happy, adventurous and sporty people with a high quality of life.

“It helps approaching a local environment with an open mind. When you move to a new country it helps to have a basic understanding the people and the history of the country. You must get out of your comfort zone and try to be local as much as possible, for instance, adapt your sense of humour,” Marco Esposito, CEO of UniCredit Bank Slovenia, summing up his advice on how to fit in.

Ronald Sudić, head of HR commented: “Here we really have an opportunity to experience the UniCredit philosophy, ethics and respect integrated in everyday life.” All expat colleagues agreed it was the people in the bank who helped them on-board faster and easily. They find colleagues trustful, creative, and predictable in a positive manner, respecting the engagements and their responsibilities to deliver.

One of the Slovenian participants responded: “We are glad to have you here because you bring diversity and fresh positive energy!”