Yes, jobs are far and in between for fresh graduates and the market isn’t entirely ready to absorb every graduate in every field. The jobs that are being posted often make it a requirement to get at least experience and yes, how on earth can you get experience if no one is giving you the chance? But, in the midst of all the questions and frustrations the job search might bear it is important not to forget what’s expected from you. It is extremely important for you to take responsibility for your career.
Yes, having your degree is a major milestone but it is only a fraction of what the job market demands. As a job seeker, most employers expect you to know at least the very basics of day to day office activities in addition to a willingness to learn the rest. Employers are aware of the realities of the state of education in the country and you should be too. The current education system isn’t evolving as fast as the job market requirements but this doesn’t excuse you from doing the work to stay up to date. This will require you to actually honestly look inwards and know exactly where you are in terms of what you can actually bring to employers. From that point on, you can actually start to truly work on yourself.
The other thing to remember and one thing most Ethiopians are criminal of, is not marketing ourselves. Growing up, we were often told that silence and restraints projects wisdom. Much of this myth is evident in the job search and other areas of our lives, we are often shy when we mustn’t be, talking about our achievements is the hardest we can do and on the flip side we expect employers and everyone else to immediately notice how great we are. That simply doesn’t happen. The major complaint from the employer side isn’t that there is a lack of skilled graduates but that they don’t hear from them. This is something most graduates need to work, they need to tell the stories of their skills beyond just the typical CV. Be identifiable, let them know you can do the job.
Don’t expect for the system to hand you a job right from graduation, yes most of us didn’t get an education that takes into account our interests, strengths and inclinations, jobs are hard to secure and the world isn’t fair. But you are the only person that can make the entire job search process a learning experience for you to grow from rather than just a depressive time suck.
As a fresh graduate(or soon to be), what else do you think you can do to improve your chances at finding your dream job? Let us know in the comments below.