WEED IS FINALLY, KINDA, SORTA LEGAL IN GERMANY! AND OTHER NEWS.

What’s on this week?  Weed is finally, kinda, sorta legal in Germany. A court ruling may free up thousands of rental flats in Berlin. Germans are working well past retirement due to “pension poverty”. There are going to be public transit strikes across the country this week. The number of school dropouts in Germany is on the rise.

We cover all this and more in our Feb 25, 2024 edition of The Berlin Life newsletter.

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Personal News

Sometimes, I’m going to overshare.

⭐ Lesson learned the hard way this week – never share an opinion on Twitter about women not being represented in the workplace. Stats show that women make less in Germany and leadership in German companies tends to overwhelmingly be white men, but god forbid a woman speak the truth and share her thoughts. 🫠

⭐ This week, I’ll officially pass probation. I’ve (almost) made it! 🥂

General Community News

News from The Berlin Life community.

 Connect with others and attend great events in Berlin! FOMO, featured on Sifted, connects business, tech, and creators through premier event newsletters (FOMO Berlin | FOMO Munich) and exclusive gatherings in your city. Sign up here to stay up to date and to never miss an event!

⭐ Are you looking to meet others in Berlin? Then join The Berlin Life’s “Community Mixer” on Wed, March 13 @ 7 pm. Everyone is welcome. The location is TBD, but expect beers, good food, and cool people. Book your spot.

⭐ Read last week’s newsletter: The Deutsche Bahn Seeks an Employee With Mad Windows 3.11 Skillz – In yet another demonstration of how far Germany lags in technology, the Deutsche Bahn wants an employee with Windows 3.11 experience, an OS that was released in 1991! Germany is now the world’s third-biggest economy. A four-meter-long dead python was found in Berlin. Staff at Hamburg’s foreigners office took bribes to issue residence permits to people who didn’t meet the requirements. 💸 ➡️ If you’re new here, check out our news archives.

Food For Thought

Interesting articles about the art of looking for work, humourous memes, or other useful gems floating around the web.

⭐ What words would you leave off your CV? Visionary, thought leader, or something else. I think “evangelist” is one of the worst. Read the thread over on X.

 Tech Job Interviews Are Out of Control – The hoops that companies are making people jump through are INSANE. Live coding challenges have gotten more complicated, as have take-home projects. According to WIRED, “In one interview for an engineering role at Netflix, a technical recruiter requested that a job candidate submit a three-page project evaluation within 48 hours—all before the first round of interviews.”

⭐ Just how do the 1% in Germany live? Check out this graphic depicting the wealth distribution in Germany.

⭐ German companies who are planning layoffs and where you might NOT want to apply:

            • Miele: 2,700 worldwide with several hundred in Germany SAP: 8000 jobs
            • Continental: 7100 jobs
            • Merck: 700 jobs
            • Porsche: 600 jobs
            • Deutsche Telekom: 2,000 jobs
            • Bayer: no forced termination yet, but is advocating voluntary termination with severance through 2026
            • Mercedes-Benz: no exact number but about 10% of management
            • Deutsche Bank: 800 this year, up to 3.500 by the end of 2025

⭐ If you’re like me, it’s hard to not feel super depressed when you look at the world sometimes. I recently took comfort and inspiration from these two articles – Finding joy in the little things really can benefit your wellbeing – a scientist explains and Struggling in these extraordinary times? The answer may be compassion.

⭐ A great list of career fairs happening in Berlin fairly soon.

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Companies Hiring

German companies hiring right now. Also, follow our LinkedIn page for job postings between newsletter blasts. 💪​​

 Vilisto | Hamburg

 itacs | Berlin

 FUTRUE | Munich

 think-cell | Berlin

 NKT | Berlin & Cologne

 TRIFT | Berlin

 German Startup News

German startups that recently received funding, were acquired, built up staff, etc., and could be good places to look for jobs.

 Monite | Berlin | Jobs

 promiseQ | Berlin | Jobs

 Silencio | Munich | Jobs

 Embea | Berlin | Jobs

 Altavo | Dresden | Jobs

 Cyclize | Stuttgart | Jobs

 Threedy | Darmstadt | Jobs

News in Germany

All of the news in Germany.

 Deutsche Wohnen: Dispute over millions in data protection fines continues – Deutsche Wohnen, one of Germany’s biggest landlords is in trouble AGAIN. This time for a data protection breach. The company could be facing steep fines if found guilty of misconduct.

 New Berlin court ruling could free up thousands of houses for rent – Fingers crossed that this law is passed. The apartment situation here is just getting way too desperate. 🤞

 Audience members heckle Hilary Clinton at Berlin event – People interrupted Clinton, accusing her of war crimes before being shooed away by security.

 Berlin concerts: The best live music for March 2024 – Exberliner rounds up some of the best gigs happening in Berlin next month. 🎸

 ‘Almost half’ of freelancers in Germany struggling to find assignments – Being a freelancer is never easy anywhere, but almost half of those working in Germany are finding it difficult to find business.

 10 reasons to love Bremen – DW lists out why you should love Bremen and I heartily agree, as Bremen is one of my favorite German cities.

 Berlin’s Thaipark must move out of Preußenpark, authorities say – Can’t we ever just have anything nice? A court ruling means the location of Thaipark must be moved, but no worries, the market will simply operate in a new location.

 Germany’s Catholic Church speaks out against far-right – A rare gesture of goodwill from the Catholic church, speaking out against the growing popularity of the far-right in Germany.

 More people in Germany are working past retirement age – Pension payouts don’t enable many old people in Germany to live comfortably, driving them to work past retirement.

 Germany: Number of school dropouts is rising – In a not-so-positive development, the number of young people dropping out of school and not pursuing higher education (including vocational studies), is on the rise. 🚨

 German town votes against Tesla factory expansion plans – With worries about contaminated drinking water, locals voted against an expansion. However, it’s not legally binding, and I don’t doubt that Tesla’s might will ensure the expansion proceeds.

 Germany’s recession fears: Economic outlook is grim – There’s no chance of improvements in 2024. 😭

 Germany’s Bundestag votes for cannabis legalization – Stoners everywhere are celebrating, as people will be allowed to possess and grow a limited amount of weed. Of course, as Germany loves to do, the laws are unnecessarily complicated.

 Germany ranked second-best European country for university education – Germany comes out as the winner AGAIN.

 Ver.di announces 6 days of public transport strikes in Germany – An alert for locals – expect a serious amount of disruption to your planned commutes this week. 😒

How We Can Help

Some of the good stuff offered by the Berlin Life.

⭐ Get connected with other like-minded professionals in our community by adding yourself to our LinkedIn Connect and Exchange list. Chat with others in our Facebook and Slack community spaces. 🗣️

⭐ We offer career coaching and other services and free guides to living, working, and moving to Berlin. Some of our most-read guides include:

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Cheryl Howard, Founder @ The Berlin Life

Cheryl Howard, Founder @ The Berlin Life

Hi, I’m Cheryl. My mission is to help you move to Berlin and find work.

A Canadian in Berlin for 10+ years, I have the unique experience of moving to Berlin – not once, but twice. During my time in Berlin, I’ve had five different visas and worked as both a freelancer and a permanent employee for numerous Berlin companies. I even managed to find a new job during the pandemic and again in 2023, during Germany’s recession and massive layoffs in tech. 

My day job has involved work as a hiring manager, overseeing the recruitment of countless people, as well as a team coach helping teams and individuals work better and find happiness in their careers. Through my side projects, I’ve also shared my personal experiences by publishing a series of helpful blog posts, creating a thriving community of job seekers, and hosting events to help people find work in Berlin. In 2021, I decided to put my coaching and recruiting talents to use by creating The Berlin Life, bringing my existing content and community together in one spot.

The combination of my personal and professional experience means I know exactly what it takes to move to Berlin and find work.