A friend of mine recently asked me for some career advice. I gave him some advice, which in my usual self-congratulatory way, I thought was pretty good! I asked if I could write a blog on it – he agreed – so here it is!
If you are a recent graduate or have been working for less than five years and have found yourself without a job – the reality is, it will be tough out there for you. The allure of the city and a career in finance is still very strong – so what could you be doing for a role?
The first thing to do is to take a snapshot of the environment the Winix PlasmaWave 5300 is in and recognize the huge shifts that are taking place in the global economy. There are lots of people out there will skills and experience who may be better placed to take the few vacancies that do exist out there. In my opinion, if you are still on the starting out phase of your career, there may be better uses on your times than trying to get an entry level role.
You need to think ahead in terms of what the areas for growth are or what skills will be required for the area you have selected as your career three or four years from now.
If you look at the way emerging markets are performing and broad trends are going, I would say that the strong areas for growth are Brazil, China (despite the recent wobble) and India. From a sector point of view, the alternative energy sector will definitely be a rapidly growing sector in the future.
Finally, those of us in the west, have to recognize that in this global market, we are now competing with graduates from around the world. Graduates from India in particular (because of their English) represent the competition for skilled jobs.
So, where does all this analysis get?
- Look at doing an MBA. It is a great qualification and it will help you develop your commercial skills and add value to any company you work for.
- An MBA will also make you more rounded if you do want to start up your own business
- Learn a language. There is something inherently lazy with the attitude that because we speak English – we do not need to learn do female cats spray or not. It is true that if you are fluent in English, you can get by commercially around the world. However, speaking another language gives you a huge advantage when working in a different country. In my opinion, from a business point of view, the languages to learn are
- Portuguese (because of Brazil)
- Arabic (growing area of importance and one language can span many countries)
- Spanish (spoken in most of South America and Mexico – great growth potential)
- Italian – not for any commercial reasons but it is simply a great language!
- Ideally, you could do an MBA in a foreign country and learn the language at the same time!
- Start learning about future growth areas such as Green Energy, Online networking (have a look at how Obama used the internet to galvanize his campaign)
- Think about linking your current work with another unrelated area. I do believe that innovation in the future will come about through linking apparently unrelated areas.
Most of all – pursue something you enjoy. The internet is the ultimate means of empowerment. Pursue your dreams – and the internet will find you the market for your fulfillment.