It is no news that the unemployment rate in Africa is very high. As true as this is, it is still not an excuse to be idle. I’ve recently come across a lot of people who are really idle and who laze around all in the name of unemployment.
I really do understand how difficult things could be as I was once unemployed and a lot of career professionals have experienced unemployment at some point but all through my days of not being employed I was never idle. I was always working on projects, always looking for opportunities to serve, to learn and to network and I never sat at home idle. It was in this process of engaging myself productively that the job offers started rolling in even when I didn’t apply for some of them. I will be sharing a few things that can aid you while you’re unemployed.
Have a plan and strategy
Some African youths just bump into things without prior planning, however, I’ve found out that sustainable success doesn’t come by accidents.
You’re unemployed and you’re trying to get a paid job, what are the plans and strategies that you have put into place to make this happen?
How well do you even know yourself? What are the unique skills that you possess that is needed in the job market?
How updated is your CV? Does it reflect your unique skills and the kind of job you’re interested in getting?
Do you have a list of roles you want to apply to or organizations you want to work for on paper?
How many hours do you devote each day to your job search?
How you carrying out a progress analysis to track down your progress in your job search? Do you know the industries that are currently employing? How many job agencies and recruiters have you registered with? Are you learning from every interview and are you documenting those lessons? What are the current employment trends? What skills are mostly in demand in the job market? What’s your plan A, what’s your plan B? What’s your one month plan? What’s your two months plan? I know individuals who are looking for jobs and have not gotten a single interview for close to a year and yet there are not asking questions. To people in such categories, most of them simply say the country is bad and there is partiality.
Keep planning, and keep refining your plans and strategies till you get a job. Always update yourself. As you do this you will be surprised at how much progress you’ll make in your job search
I’ve seen a lot of idle and unemployable graduates. Idleness kills and damages one’s self esteem. I agree that there are not many jobs, but there’s always work to be done. Someone somewhere needs to accomplish a particular task and they will appreciate whatever kind of help they can get. A busy executive somewhere needs someone to prepare his Power Point slide, A busy CEO needs someone to organize his very busy schedule, a Human Resource executive needs someone to help him post vacancies on the job board and craft job description. A company somewhere needs a social media presence. Why don’t you volunteer to be that person? Jobs are created as a result of specific needs that arises within organizations. Why not go pioneer the social media department in that organization for free. Why not go and start a research work for free in that learning and development organization.
Volunteering is very vital to your development as a job seeker. Someone might be asking what if I’m turned down. Does that stop you from going somewhere else to volunteer your skills? Volunteering your free time to work for free automatically sends a message to a lot of career professionals that you’re the serious type and that you’re focused, so they tend to want to give you an opportunity to prove yourself. Moreover if you’re turned down somewhere, why not go else where? Volunteering may not automatically get you a job within an organization but its rewards are endless. Benefits of volunteering includes:
- Building your network and connection
- Improve your skills and you learn new ones
- Improves your self esteem as you know that you’re contributing to an organization’s development
- Improves your Linkedin profile
- Become a paid position
- The list of benefits continues
To be continued in part 2
Employment Solutions Strategist