I worked with Taiwanese solely for many years. In the end I was sick of it, and now choose to work for foreign organisations. It wasn't that I was treated badly, I was treated well. But I missed the connection with Westerners and people from different places. Plus Taiwanese companies are stingy and government wages suck, mostly.
I still think for someone in their early-to-mid 20s there is no better experience one can have
than working in Taiwan if you're able to find interesting work. You'll be exposed to files that might have taken decades to amass back in the West and you're working at HQs rather than at some satellite office of an MNC.
In my opinion, pay is secondary at that stage of life. While I came to Taiwan with the original intent to drink with a buddy for two weeks, I was able to see very quickly that it was a country that offered and continues to offer a lot of opportunities for people that don't mind "working hard" and who are ambitious.
My experiences in Taiwan in my 20s were certainly not motivated by money. But they were certainly interesting and quite valuable as a CV builder. In the government organization I worked for in Taiwan, I was able to understand/review financial/diplomatic correspondences about Taiwan's overseas activities with respect to their medical missions, technical assistance programs, SME programs, agricultural diversification projects, and a lot of communications with some international organizations. It also gave me some pretty valuable exposure into the political realm and I was able to get a great recommendation from the organization's Secretary General. Unfortunately for me (fortunately for him
), he was promoted to Deputy Foreign Minister and his replacements (Chen Admin-after 2nd election) were not merit appointments. I left soon thereafter, but in retrospect think it was one of the best positions someone in their mid-20s could have had. I was exposed to the work and $ that is required to maintain diplomatic relations. Pay was shite but "pay isn't everything" when you're young.
As soon as that government work ended. I was also pretty lucky to work for one of Taiwan's best companies and spent 100s of hours over a few years with company family members on a number of interesting projects. Before accepting the job, I forgot about applying for this position, only took the interview for the experience (had already found another position) and had no idea who has interviewing me. As a result, I was pretty aggressive, blunt, and ended up chatting for like five hours. Longest interview ever.
Later found out he was a family member of the owner. Learned a lot from him.
Overall, 3 years in the public and 3 years in the private sectors in Taiwan gave me some pretty valuable insights into the Taiwan experience. I've used these experiences to get a job back in my home country that I like, but the overall pace is a hell of a lot slower and it's actually a lot more hierarchical than Taiwan (where I was lucky to have pretty good access to key decision makers). The quality of life is great back in my home country but there isn't the "Taiwan energy." In other words, I live in a comfortable and clean backwater
That's fine---once you have kids the ball game changes a bit and right now education for the kids and citizenship for them is a priority.
Will my Taiwan experience continue to benefit me? Have seen it first hand. Have been rostered and interviewed recently for some pretty cool overseas jobs that might take me away again.
I definitely think my Taiwan experience has provided me with some experiences that make me stand out. And that's what life is about.
In your 20s and 30s it's about taking the road less travelled. And that's made all the difference.