Category Archives: Careers

Vacancy – Apply Within

vacancy

Growing up in Nigeria, that used to be the way employers advertised their vacancies….some still do this up until now.

They would place a banner or board in front of the office, detailing their vacancies, sit back and watch people pour in to apply for such vacancies.

Seeing this always brought hope to the job seeker who happened to be passing by and they ALWAYS carried their Resume about in the hopes that they would come across such as these.

Not all that walked in and applied were ready or prepared and it was those who were ready and prepared that got the job.

Their Resume was up-to-date

Their dressing was interview-ready

Their skills were relevant.

Those were happy times….

What we see these days are people with scanty resumes that do not fit the specified job role.

People who do not know how best to dress for an interview.

People whose skills set do not match those advertised.

People who have no idea what they want.

Really, you need to put in more effort in order to get the job of your dreams. It should be much easier than the road-side vacancies.

One thing the road-side vacancies did not give applicants was TIME. And you have a little more time than those applicants did. Use the time wisely.

Invest in a CV Editing service in order to get a top notch CV. Or get someone to help take a look.

Ensure you are the best person for the job and determine to get the job.

Prepare well for the interview – Dressing, Comportment, Timing, Research.

Be professional at all times.

All the best!

Cheers…

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Vacancy Announcement: Project Officer, Education UK, Abuja

BC Jobs
Region
Sub Saharan Africa

 

Country

Nigeria

 

Location
Abuja

 

Department
Education & Society

 

Job Category
Project Management

 

Pay Band
Pay Band 4

 

Vacancy Description
Post is pay band 4 (Administrative Support)/indefinite contract/Open to internal & external applicants/applicants must have right to work and live in Nigeria/post is based in Abuja.
The post holder will work with the SIEM Project Manager supporting the delivery of British Council’s Service for International Education Marketing and Education UK brand of products and services.

The post holder will  also support the delivery of Education UK Exhibitions, marketing and communication services and other project support and delivery functions as required. Core functions include

1. Project & Contract Delivery
2. Marketing & Customer Service
3. Financial Planning & Management
4. Scorecard Management
5. Contacts Database Management

Refer to the role profile for more information on role responsibilities

Vacancy announced: 23rd April, 2016
Closing date: 23:59UK time 7th May, 2016

 

Manage Yourself

In the workplace, employees are always charged to manage their bosses. But has anyone ever asked the employees if they have been able to manage themselves?

Chances are, that question has seldom been asked.

What does it mean to manage oneself?

Let’s do some dictionary research together, shall we?

Manage

Verb

  1. Be in charge of (a business, organization, or undertaking); run.
  1. Succeed in surviving or in achieving something despite difficult circumstances; cope.

I actually like both meanings and so we are going to explore both, a bit more.

Manage – Be in charge of. Run.

An example would be: The young man managed his business properly.

Other synonyms that can replace managed in this sentence include: Ran, Directed, Administered, Supervised, Governed, Operated.

This young man took charge of his business. He oversaw all that pertained to it. He ensured that the business survived and blossomed. He nurtured his business, making certain that he took the right decisions to ensure success.

Now let’s interchange the word business for person.

Now we have:

The young man managed his person (himself) properly.

What does this mean?

He took charge of his life. He oversaw all that concerned him. He took responsibility for his actions (Wow…a big one). He didn’t blame society, his employers or his parents. He ensured that his career blossomed. He nurtured his ideas, making certain that he took the right decisions to ensure success.

I think we are beginning to get the picture. (Remember that I am also learning as I type, so I am getting the picture too 😉 )

Manage – Succeed in surviving. Cope

An example here would be:

The young lady managed the little money she had on her, quite well.

We could replace managed here with: Coped with. Fared on, Survived on. Got by on. Made do with.

This young lady coped with what she had. She didn’t complain but tried her best to get by on the little funds she had. She must have calculated to figure out how she will survive and she stuck to her calculations and budget. She remained resilient in the face of her current challenges and we see that she never gave up.

Interchanging once again, we have:

The young lady managed herself quite well.

She got on by. She survived. She didn’t cave in or give in to despair. She struggled and achieved her aim. She found and implemented a coping strategy that worked well for her. She was resilient in the face of challenges.

What does this mean to employees?

Whatever your current situation or challenge may be, the first thing you have to do, before you try to manage anyone else, is to manage yourself. Take charge. Take responsibility. Nurture your dreams and ideas. Make better decisions. Endure. Persist. Be resilient. Do not cave in. Struggle to rise above your challenges.

Today I urge you to be a better manager. Not just of others, but of yourself.

Be a better you!

Dear Applicant, I don’t think you really wanted that job!

Unemployment is everywhere, they say.

Jobs are not available, they cry.

People only hire people they know, they lament.

We didn’t stand a chance, they chorus.

Well here’s my reply to you, dear applicant.

Dear Applicant,

You applied for a job and I called you for a phone interview but you never picked up your phone and you never called back. Did you think I was a stalker or your little nephew asking for money again?

I don’t think you really wanted that job!

Dear Applicant,

I advertised a vacancy and requested that people send in CVs. Your email arrived with a cover letter in the body of the mail. I was really impressed and could not wait to view your CV. There was only one problem. You forgot to attach the CV.

I did the unthinkable… I replied your email asking you to attach your CV and you did not reply me until the next day, without an apology. In any case, it was already too late.

I don’t think you really wanted that job!

Dear Applicant,

I advertised a vacancy and requested that people send in CVs. Your email arrived with an attachment but no subject nor message. All I saw in the body of the email was

‘Sent from my Blackberry Smartphone’

I don’t think you really wanted that job!

Dear Applicant,

I advertised a vacancy and requested that people send in CVs. Your email arrived forwarded from the last place you sent it to. And PS, there was no attachment.

I don’t think you really wanted that job!

Dear Applicant,

I advertised for a vacancy and requested that people send in CVs. Your email came in with a short cover letter telling me how qualified you were for the role. You said your CV would convince me beyond all reasonable doubt that you were the one for the position. I opened your CV expecting soo much…. and I didn’t find one word that qualified you as right for the position. I even used Ctrl F to search for the keyword in the role and came up blank.

I don’t think you really wanted that job!

Dear Applicant,

You were invited for an interview and you arrived slightly late but in good time. I interviewed you and to be frank, you were OK. The only problem was…. You were dressed in a micro mini skirt and had huge false eyelashes.

In my humble opinion, I don’t think you really wanted that job!

 

I really would love to take a stab at reducing unemployment but job seekers make it so difficult for anyone to help them. And so this is me venting and pleading…..

Prove to me that you really want that job!

 

Signed,

Hiring Manager.

 

The 140 Xter Employee

Last month I wrote a post about The 140 Xter Manager and how this Manager gives an opportunity for employees to lead and showcase their skills in the workplace.

Today I would like to discuss the 140 Xter Employee.

A 140 Xter Employee is one that contributes to the organization in 140 Xters or less. This person is dormant, passive and inactive during team discussions. We all know this person. They are the people who are quiet during discussions, not because they are quietly strategizing on how to move the organization forward, but because they really have nothing to say.

Let me just say immediately that it is unwise to be a 140 Xter Employee as this sends the wrong signal to the management of the organization. Anyone who does this should not think that they are being smart and that no one notices them or their actions.

Every human being wants to be surrounded by people who add value to them and organizations are no exception.  If a person cannot add value and contribute during discussions, it causes one to wonder why they are even in the team or organization. Team spirit is lacking here.

In recent times organizations have devised a method that helps them know upfront, if a prospective employee would be a 140 xter employee. The method: Assessment centres. This has fully been integrated into most interviewing processes of organizations. The way in which it works is that the prospects are placed in teams and given a project to work on. Here the employer is looking at the team dynamics and looking out for team playing and team building skills. The results at an assessment centre go a long way in determining if a person would get the job or not.

Job seekers may have all the technical skills needed to get the job done but if team spirit is non-existent, there lies a big mis-match.

So for job seekers, go on out there and develop your team playing skills and for currently employed individuals, hone those team playing skills as well.

Speak up! Speak out! Contribute!

Join the conversation below.

Professionalism in the workplace

The Oxford dictionary defines a professional as: “A person competent or skilled in a particular activity” while professionalism is defined as: “The competence or skill expected of a professional”

That summarizes my post today.

Professionalism is simply put: the ethics of every profession. It means a person is an expert in performing everyday tasks relating to his/her profession.

Professionalism has got little or nothing to do with skill and abilities. Professionalism, if a skill at all, is a soft skill. You either have it or you don’t.

Sadly most ‘professionals’ do not display signs of professionalism. Pride and Arrogance have replaced the definition of professionalism.

Below are a few traits common with professionals. I will start with the easy ones 😉

1. Competence: You know your job and you do it well. Take note that not everyone knows what their job is…whether or not they read their job description.

2. Self Development: No professional wants to be caught with their pants down. Caught without their facts. As a professional, you need to know your stuff. Desire knowledge. Get wisdom and in all you are getting, get understanding.

3. Reliability: Can your team depend on you to show up on time, submit your work on time, e.t.c. Kunle Olaifa, HR Manager- Samsung West Africa, recently said: ‘The market women at Alade market in Ikeja area of Lagos State, are more professional than most ‘professionals’. You will always meet them at their stalls at the right time; If they tell you a particular product would be available by the next day, you can take their word to the bank. If It won’t be available, they would let you know when next to check back. They go to great lengths to ensure customer satisfaction.

4.Honesty: Say things as they are. Be up-front. Do not sugar-coat the truth.

5. Integrity: Known for consistently keeping to set principles and ethics.

6. Respect and support to others: Treat people the way you would like to be treated and be willing to support, help, listen and teach others.

7. Work-Life Balance: Balancing work and personal life is and will always be one of the most difficult things a professional has to deal with. Learning how not to let personal matters interfere with work-related matters and how not to spend work hours attending to personal matters sums this up perfectly. Another aspect of this is taking time rest so that your job is not affected by you experiencing burn-out.

Yes this is a tall-order and the truth is that we will struggle at this…I know I do. But keep at it. Strive to achieve these. The more practice you put into these, the better your chances of achieving a positive reputation among peers, colleagues, subordinates and superiors.

What other traits should be found in professionals? Please share your views and let’s learn from you!

“Social Media is the best platform for Career Advancement” … Kunle Olaifa

The just concluded Social Media Week was an eye opener for Nigerian youths, as they were exposed to various ways of using the social media other than being a platform to connect with family and friends. One of these revelations is how to use the social media to get their dream job.

Kunle Olaifa, Head, Human Resource, Samsung West Africa, made this known at one of the sessions tagged ‘Social Media, The Future And Your Career’, which was put together by Career Solutions Africa, a company dedicated to providing career advisory services to individuals and organisations for attainment of career goals. In his words, “the social media is the best platform for job seekers to connect with employers and get their dream jobs”

Read more here: “Social Media is the best platform for Career Advancement” Kunle Olaifa.