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Expert insists on personal development for employability

Posted: Apr 15, 2015 at 12:09 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Oyeniran Apata – Correspondent, Lagos

 

To redress the growing rate of unemployment among youths in the country, a recruitment expert has charged young Nigerians to invest in personal development and employability skills as pre-condition to secure desired jobs.

Managing Director, Proshare Nigeria Limited, Olufemi Awoyemi, stated this at a seminar tagged, “Workplace Readiness and Employability Discussion”,  organised by Alumni Association of University of Lagos at the Multi Purpose Hall of the institution.

He advised students to consciously invest in personal branding and soft skills development as it provides the needed advantage in the global work space.

According to him, “Employability is about having the capability to gain initial employment, maintain employment and obtain new employment if required.

He added, “For the individual, employability depends on their assets in terms of the knowledge, skills and attitudes they possess, the way they use and deploy those assets, the way they present them to employers; and crucially, the context within which they seek work”.

Speaking further at the seminar attended by both undergraduates and graduating students of the university, he said, “From what I have seen in practice, more and more people are investing in their education, but it will be nice to know that very few people are investing in personal branding. Branding goes a long way in your getting employed. The totality of your person determines your brand, which will be weighed against the expectation of today and tomorrow by your employers.

“So, in this current fast pace society that we find ourselves, pursuing a university degree is no longer enough. In fact, the minimum requirement is a post-graduate degree,” he said.

Awoyemi observe that University education and the state of vocational education is under a lot of stress, contending that emphasis is therefore for people to move towards technical education to cope with the new realities.

He revealed that communication skills, teamwork skills, problem solving skills, technology skills, management skills, lifelong learning skills, Enterprise skills, Planning and organisation skills are key employability skills which every undergraduate and graduate must possess to stand a chance in today’s ever competitive world.

On his part, the Managing Director, Eagle 8 Consulting, Mr. Lucky Idike, noted that employability is about having the capability to gain initial employment, maintain employment and obtain new employment if required.

Idike in his presentation at the event disclosed that for the individual, employability depends on; assets in terms of the knowledge, skills and attitudes they possess; the way they use and deploy those assets; the way they present them to employers; and crucially, the context within which they seek work.

Earlier in his opening remark, President, UNILAG Alumni Association, Sunny Kuku, observes that in a situation where the nation is grappling with 54 per cent of youth unemployment,  the jobs that are available can only be taken by people who have being properly groomed and have the right education.

The Vice Chancellor, Professor Rahaman Bello represented by Dean of Postgraduate Studies, Professor Lucian Chukwu, says the alumni have been doing a lot for the university in various spheres of life, pointing out that the seminar is also one of those initiatives the institution uses to reach out to students and prepare them for a better experience after graduation.

“I do hope and believe that the students would make better use of these opportunities as they abound. Therefore I have no doubt in my mind that the team that we have assembled here will do good justice to the topic” he says.