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Thursday, June 23, 2016

The contrasting tales of two job hunters

Job hunting: tackling youth unemployment in Nigeria
Photo-courtesy: Vanguard
A report once had it that a young man (names withheld) tried to end his life by jumping off a speeding Toyota Hiace bus in Uyo, expecting to be crushed to death by oncoming vehicles after several attempts to secure a job proved abortive.

The incident opened the eyes of the world to the plight of hordes of unemployed Nigerian graduates, who have gone to extreme lengths to secure meaningful means of livelihood. Anything that would give a person suicidal thoughts because of a job has become alarmingly serious. 

Coincidentally, during the same period the news was making rounds; international news channels buzzed with the story of yet another Nigerian graduate, though based in the United Kingdom, who after unsuccessful attempts to secure a job using known means decided to think outside the box.

Alfred Ajani, a graduate of Sports Marketing at Coventry University, adopted an unconventional job-searching method to break the shackles of unemployment. He inscribed his qualification on a banner and advertised himself at a train station lifting the banner for passersby to view. Merely doing that and refusal to give up got him the opportunity he craved for. Now he is gainfully employed. According to Ajani, he had submitted his CVs 300 times before his breakthrough came.

Alfred Ajani
What is the disparity between these two guys? One chose to end his life having been frustrated by the system and another decided to push on until something happened. This goes a long way to tell us that no matter the intensity of your challenge today, others have faced same and even tougher ones and are overcoming them. Why not you? There is basically no reason to give up on yourself. 

Somebody might be tempted to say, ‘Oh that happened in the UK, it can never happen in Nigeria’. However, observations and current happenings show that unwavering determination usually has an outcome that does not respect geographical boundaries. I have a lot of stories to buttress this point, some of which are from personal experience but next story will do justice to it.

I heard this amazing testimony in Church: a job seeker got an inspiration from a sermon he heard which left this indelible impression in his heart: “To wait, doing nothing at home, is to waste”. So he prayed and got the idea to start selling malt drinks. He did this and used the opportunity to advertise his CVs. 

So each morning, he would dress up in his nice suit as if he were going to one big office, but to the chagrin of many, would carry his crates of malt to the market and began marketing them there. One of those days while selling his ‘goods’, representatives of a company seeking to employ a marketing manager for their brand drove past him, but couldn’t resist asking “Who is this well-kitted dude selling bottled drinks?” They were enthralled by his passion for marketing the drinks. 

Subsequently, they made inquiries about his qualifications, invited him for an interview and the next thing he was made a marketing manager for the brand. Imagine the gap between hawking malt drinks in the market and becoming a marketing manager. Determination pays, my people. 

Instead of sitting at home bemoaning your inability to get a job; pray, seek for ideas, launch out and make things happen. There is no crime in humbling yourself to start small. What determines whether we will be celebrated or cajoled in life are our actions. Yes, they have refused to employ you, why not employ yourself? Bigger opportunities will show up and you can’t wait to cash in on them.

See you at the top! 

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  1. Replies
    1. Thanks for your wonderful feedback, Elder KC. I will do my best :)