A lot of us make mistakes in our career choices because we do not plan. We assume that our grades can get us to our target careers. I was speaking with a group of students in a University in Lagos about how we have so many second class upper and first class candidates these days. In my own days, a whole department might just produce one second class upper and no first class student at all! Lol! On a serious note, this simply means that there is a lot of competition out there. The question is“What makes you stand out from the crowd?”
This question led to my developing the acronym DPA, i would like to share with BIE readers today. Follow these steps and you will have a great chance at career success.
Discover: Know yourself –“Who am I? What are my likes? What am I passionate about? Where do I see myself happy in the next 10 years?” A lot of people are miserable and stuck in the wrong careers just because they failed to take time to discover, who they really are.
Prepare: Match those abilities, passion and who you are with a particular career. Afterwards, begin to prepare towards fulfilling the criteria required to fit that role. Read, acquire certifications, and research extra degrees or other qualificationsyou need to qualify you for that desired career. Set goals, write them down and ensure that they are SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time Bound). You also need to acquire other soft skills such as time management, project management, communication, team working etc.
Act: Its time to put your goals into action. It is important to note that employers don’t usually have the time to teach anyone, they just want people to flow into workplace without any stress. Thus, the onus is on you to train yourself pre-employment in order to gain that experience. Go and intern, do vacation jobs, offer volunteer services and gain that necessary experience. Always seek out opportunities for training. Fortunately, there are a lot of free trainings out there. There are websites with relevant content and sites where you can see opportunities which can help boost your career prospects.
If you have not served (NYSC) or you are currently serving in Nigeria, go and make a mark in your place of primary assignment. Identify a problem and find a solution you will be remembered for. Don’t just waste that one year thinking it is just a waste of time.
“Wherever you are, go out there, make a difference and work your way into career success “