Successful Brits in Toronto: Ian Sandusky

Ian Sandusky and a "mystery stunner" according to The Sun

Ian Sandusky and a “mystery stunner” according to The Sun tabloid

Ian Sandusky has only been in the city for six months. But it still qualifies because he’s a BRIT in TORONTO. And we liked the cut of his jib.

Now, let’s see how SUCCESSFUL he is …

What made you decide to choose Toronto as a city of choice? Did you plan a permanent move, or wanted to “try it for a while and see how it goes” and it turned out to be longer than planned?

Years ago I had planned to move downtown for a job in advertising, but when the recession hit and I was laid off, those plans got put on hold. Earlier this year I met someone special in the city, and that was the catalyst to pack my bags and move to West Queen West. It was a snap decision, but I consider it to be one of the best choices I’ve made thus far.

What steps did you take to land your first Toronto job? Did the infamous “Canadian experience” hinder you in any way?

I used the shotgun approach to get my first interviews, which in turn led to my first job in sales at Front and Spadina. I responded to every employment listing that sounded even remotely plausible — and many that I was completely unqualified for. I figured that if my name crossed enough desks, eventually something would stick … and it did!

Much like everything else, it comes down to persistence. It only takes one “yes” to make all the rejections irrelevant.

What’s the best/worst aspects of living in Toronto?

The best aspect in my opinion is living in the midst of such a hotbed of culture. There are so many people doing so many innovative things with so much unbridled passion — it’s incredibly inspiring to have that all around you.

The worst is the traffic — driving three blocks can take the better part of an hour, some days … but that’s a minor price to pay for all the benefits living down here provides.

Do you make an effort to connect with other Brits in the city, or just meet them when chance allows it? Any recommended pubs/eateries/other places for homesick Brits to meet each other and network?

I personally have not made an effort specifically – I’ve only been in the city for six months, so I’m just happy to meet people of any heritage at the moment!

My favourite is the Dog & Bear by Queen West and Dovercourt. Ask Richie for a pint of Beau’s Lugtread, and I’m sure you’ll be hooked.

Open question/comment: feel free to write anything here/advice/tips on a Brit living in, or moving to, Toronto.

This city is what you make it. If you focus on the negative, you’ll notice it all around you. If you choose to constantly be curious about Toronto and amazed by what it has to offer, you’ll never want to leave.

Take walks, talk to strangers, try new things — and before you know it, this will be home.


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