How To Find A Perfect Job In Lagos

  • Table of Content
    • Brief Introduction
    • Ten Steps to Finding the Perfect Job In Lagos
      1. Obtain a degree (University or College)
      2. Find A Timeless Career, In Demand not a job
      3. Get a professional certification in that specialty and in line with your university degree
      4. Acquire a practical skill in demand
      5. Get at least a years’ experience practicing that skill in an establishment
      6. Optimize your LinkedIn profile to skillfully display all achievements
      7. Build a network, really connect and rapport with HRs, CEOs and other highly placed personnel in your Sector
      8. Write a good CV, Cover Letter and have a perfect Career Profile
      9. Never stop applying at least 20-50 roles per day
      10. Demonstrate value every time you are called in for an interview
    • Conclusion
  •  
Employee with a laptop working a job in Lagos

Introduction To Finding The Perfect Job In Lagos

Finding a job in Lagos, Abuja or any other part of Nigeria would be one of the most daunting and redundant tasks anyone will ever undertake without a proper network. This is because there aren’t many job vacancies in Lagos today and a lot of graduates both home based and returnees from foreign institutions are clamoring for the few job positions available. It is mostly frustrating and really disheartening especially for the middle and low born who require entrance to the corporate world. It can take between 1 month to 18 years after NYSC to secure a perfect job in Lagos. Of course, it should be said that a huge portion of this luck depends on the individual an probably a cleared spiritual pathway amidst a few other physical efforts. While a great deal of applicants do not believe that the spiritual affects the physical, I should state from an experienced angle that it does and if there is a better place I would advice any one to begin with, to guarantee success at landing a dream job in Lagos, it would be here. Irrespective of faith and denomination, it is always advisable to find ways to clear your spiritual pathway before engaging pursuits of life. This is very important and although it is a personal position and does not represent the views or positions of Transquisite Consulting, it is my most treasured secret and one I would offer only a beloved one.

Whew! Now we have that out of the way, let’s surf through other requirements to get you properly setup for your quest at securing a great job in Lagos or any part of Nigeria.

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Graduates

1. Obtain A Degree (University or College)

         Getting a university degree to secure a perfect company job is a timeless strategy that has and will continue to work. Let me begin with a story to help us see why a degree is not irrelevant as it does appear to be the case today. Micah was a very close friend who decided to flunk university education after our secondary studies. Against his father’s wishes to gain a degree before pursuing his love for animation, Micah absconded to South Africa to learn animation which he did for 3 years. After three years, Micah decided to stay put in South Africa to search for job vacancies in a bid to begin his life on greener turfs. Unfortunately, all the top television networks would not have Micah despite his proficiency in animations because he lacked a University degree. Frustrated, Micah called home for some funds to leave South Africa to other countries to establish himself. Being the son of a wealthy lawyer at the time, his father gladly obliged and Micah’s account was funded. It’s been 5 years after he received the funds. The last time I spoke with Micah, he was in college studying Performance Arts at NYC. When I asked what happened, he said he has settled in at least 4 Countries including UK and has gone around in search for Jobs. Granted, he was successful securing jobs as an animator but the pay level and the respect he was accorded was nothing to be proud of. He specifically mentioned a time when he secretly ran back to Nigeria to find jobs within Lagos Island. The worst decision he has ever made in life, he said. According to his narratives, they all wanted one thing he could not provide, a university degree. You see, this certificate might not do any particularly tangible thing for you, but it gets you in the door and gives you a voice where others cannot speak. This is exactly why you need to have a graduate certificate in today’s corporate world. It is inevitable and grossly important. It can cause you a lifetime of frustration if you do not have one but are in dire need to function in any corporate firm. To shorten this long story, my friend had to return to school after he had a bitter experience where he was hired. He said he was due for promotion and the promotion was to come with an $850,000 contract to deliver an animated trailer of a story to a client. He was certain he was the most qualified because he had all the technical requirements and experience needed to deliver on the task. His competitor was only a graduate with a few years’ experience under his belt and would be what he would knock out in a heartbeat. Unfortunately, the management board saw his competitor as a better fit for the role. His competitor was picked and was awarded the project. Guess who was made his subordinate? Now guess who pocketed the big bucks? Okay, lets go even deeper, guess who worked long and overtime hours for pennies to deliver on a task some other person had secured and was enjoying at home while the other was working night and day to meet deadlines? In a nutshell my friends, obtain a university degree, it has saved a lot of people from drama and heart wrecking experiences in their lives and careers. It will serve you as well.

2. Find A Timeless Career In Demand Not A Job

          The trend these days is to apply for whatever you can get and start as soon as possible to keep body and soul together. While this may be of utmost necessity, I would advice you do not loose sight of your key target which is to secure a career that is timeless and in demand. When I write timeless, I mean a job that will never be rendered redundant by technology. For instance, accounting jobs, journalism and the rest are gradually being threatened because software’s have been developed to deliver properly on those tasks. In the case of journalism, social media has made almost everyone a journalist. Very few media firms need their services anymore because citizen journalists are providing big media firms contents for a fraction of a journalist’s fee. So, do a proper research and find a career path that will not be usurped by technology. The worst position to be in is ideally where you find that your skills, the skills you sacrificed long nights perfecting have become useless and you are out of a job with no other useful skill at 50. Try being here with children screaming for fees, house rent almost due, a house wife or jobless husband that is dependent on you, frustrated relatives who look to your household to survive. It is not a good place to be. This is why you must research a career path before you plunge. Find a career, not a job because you do not want your CV to reflect Shop attendant – December 2008 to February 2012, Mechanic Saviour Autos – March 2012 to September 2012, Pastor of Heaven must wait Church December 2012- May 2015. You really want to be consistent in your career path. In the eye of a HR, you are gold and any hiring manager who sees that, immediately wants you for a role even at 50. This is because you are consistent and experienced. Find a Career path and be consistent at it. You will not just be in demand; you will be excellent at what you do.

Career Mindset
Certified Professional
Getting certified for the job market in Nigeria

3. Get A Professional Certification In That Specialty And In Line With Your University Degree

Would you love a bigger salary, a chance to be promoted rapidly, the ability to be wanted and hunted by hiring managers all your life, to be granted travel, maternity and all forms of grants and vacations, to be treasured and cared for by your boss and your firm’s HR, these and many more are privileges enjoyed by top performers in your field. To get here, you need to have been certified and probably offered a license to practise. Plus, you must be part of a body as a member. This is important because it adds credibility, respect and trust badges to your career profile.

Acquiring a professional certification, most preferably in line with your academic background even as a newbie gives you an edge in the job market over every other person. It is a pre-requisite you must not ignore. A lot of applicants do not understand how important this is. In my role as a HR personnel, I have had a lot of calls mostly from graduates who studied medicine and surgery, accounting, engineering, marketing, law and the likes who are struggling and are still in search for a job. My first question would be, have you sat for your qualification exams or any professional certification exam? Their answer? No! its not important, I don’t have the money, my friend who is making it big did not take the exam. I often remind them that it is their gateway and fundamental step to success in their chosen field. A professional certification will set you back a couple of bucks and probably months, but it has the tendency to catapult you way ahead of your colleagues and place you in positions you would never have imagined. Apply for one today and get it as soon as possible.

4. Acquire A Practical Skill In Demand

Once you are done acquiring a professional certification, acquire a skill that is timeless, in demand and most preferably in line with your certification and your educational background. See a lot of firms will not tell you this but they really don’t need those certificates for anything more than the fact that you are educated and qualified to apply for the job. That is really where your certifications end. Next, they are interested in what practical value in skill, experience and network you can bring to the table. A CEO once asked me in an interview what I had to offer apart from my certificates a few months after I had completed my Master’s at City University London and moved back to Nigeria feeling all proud, hot, wanted and entitled. This was the most deflating moment of my life as I had always believed a university degree was all I needed to secure a high paying company job in Lagos. That was really the information I grew up with because it was the most craved for and discussed topic in my southern neighbourhood. The feeling of entitlement was even more ignited observing my graduate neighbours celebrated in massive ways for making it big working corporate jobs in Lagos. So, you could imagine a fresh 25-year-old stuck in a well Air-conditioned room on a hot chair, clueless as to why he was being asked what else he had to offer aside his shinny degrees and grades. Don’t be like 25-year-old me. If you truly desire a job in Lagos or any of Nigeria’s top cities, make doubly sure that you do not appear in the interview room with just your university and professional certificates. Give yourself an edge and more value by acquiring and perfecting a skill that is in high demand and timeless in your chosen field of expertise. Once you have acquired that skill, practise endlessly and ensure you are the best at what you do. Once an opportunity knocks, you won’t be needing those certifications or the degree to be in the bucks, flying around the world doing what you love to do best.

If I could add a simple and very valuable advice to this, it would be that you ensure the skill is not one that will take you a lifetime to learn and perfect like some coding skills would. A skill you can learn and be good at within six months to 2 years max is perfect as you may not have that luxury of time to expend on skill acquisition. Also, be sure the skill you have chosen is in line with your certification and your degree as consistency is one of the core things hiring managers often hunt. Get that skill today and you will be glad you did. Most importantly, ensure that in the absence of a job, you can still privately practise that skill and earn a tangible living off it. There is nothing as frustrating as learning a skill that requires being part of a big organization to function. Learn a skill that can be offered as a service either in the capacity of a consultant, agency or explored through entrepreneurial avenues. It pays to think and work smart, not hard.

5. Get At Least A Years’ Experience Practicing That Skill In An Establishment

             Years of experience working in certain roles is what most hiring managers want to see because It tells them that you are a good buy and will not disappoint on the job once you are hired. You do not want to be like Tony who walked into one of our interview sessions to tell us how he had served excellently well and worked in 5 companies and has had 11 years of experience working in five of his own startups. Of course, he was not going to tell us these were his companies, more like ventures that had failed to yield revenue, but we were able to get some more insights from him when we probed even more. In a nutshell, experience is vital. It is even more so when you practise under the auspices of an established and recognized firm. Being an intern for a company in business is not one of the hardest things to do currently but most youths have been known to be reluctant towing this lane. Because, it is not known to give immediate gratification like a normal job would but it does greatly pay down the line. Take my advice and start somewhere even as an unpaid intern and see where the connects and experiences you will garner will take you in no time. Aside doing your CV good as it will fill up blank spaces, your sacrifice at any of the establishments you deem fit for perfecting your skill will give you a platform to have a proper and smoother launch into the corporate world. From here on, working in your role will be a breeze as you would have mastered your craft, breezed in and out of challenges before challenges sensed your presence. To be full proof, you may have an aside where you are practicing and rendering your services as an entrepreneur to gain some side funds and connections just in case your sojourn in the corporate world fails, you would have had enough networks and tasks to pull through rainy days. In the meantime, get practise, lots of it under your belt and perfect your craft.

6. Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile To Skillfully Display All Achievements

              On corporate networking, there is no better place to get started than on LinkedIn. It is the quintessential platform to begin networking with like minded individuals in similar fields of disciplines. In my experience, a lot of applicants have secured and switched jobs consistently just from being consistent on LinkedIn. You know what gives a bad impression before you even begin connecting and conversing with anyone? A bad profile! This would often be made up of an unprofessional photo, no clarity around what you do professionally, no consistent professional history/ experience, no recommendations from anyone, abbreviations around text areas, slangs, wrong spellings, irrelevant emojis and jokes, uploads of unregistered and unidentified workplaces and institutions and a lot more. These do not work well for your image on this platform, certainly not for the many CEOs and HRs who are secretly hunting for their next best recruit as they are always viewing and evaluating your profile before deciding if they really want to talk or engage with you. To help yourself along these lines, try your best to optimize your profile. A lot of blogs and YouTube videos offer tutorials on how best this can be done. Mirror them as fast as you can and ensure your profile is up to date. This goes for your CV as well.  A presentable profile and a consistent LinkedIn user has never in my experience lacked offers.

7. Build A Network And Rapport With Highly Placed Personnel On LinkedIn

           When you are advised to be active on LinkedIn, it just means keep adding new highly ranked fellows and start conversations with them. The aim is to build a strong bond, trust and a friendly relationship with them around your professional life with the believe that at some point you would be hired or your service/ product would be bought. This keeps you on top of their mind everyday as they engage in business discussions and meetings with other key stakeholders. Fingers crossed you fall into the picture at some point and your services are being required, Viola!, your luck just came in shinning an your time on LinkedIn paid off after all. The secret is to consistently yet subtly be in their faces round the clock. You can begin and sustain relationships by identifying what it is they love and are interested in. You can ask questions around Work, family, sports, politics, hobby, travels and watch which they would go on and on about. The most discussed areas are usually their areas of interest. Hold on to this to sustain interest and try not to lose sight of why you started each conversation. Do this consistently, not regularly. It pays to space things out, so you don’t give them a reason to avoid you or feel pressured by you. This is not a good place to be at all. Get started already optimizing and growing your network.

Image of an Office Worker on his Job

8. Write A Good CV, Cover Letter And Have A Perfect Career Profile

            The three most important documents you must present to your potential employer at the initial application phase are your CV, your cover letter and your career profile. We at Transquisite Consulting have observed with a deep level of concern the number of half baked, sub standard and none formal CVs and application documents applicants submit for certain job roles and frankly we have remained troubled till date as it is a never-ending spree of disappointment. What is even more disturbing is that a number of these applicants after applying will return home feeling confident that their documents are flawless while others will return to their altars praying day and night for a miracle when a few things could have been manually fixed and rearranged to ensure submissions are well arranged, well formatted and inclusive of all the details needed to successfully process job applications. I cannot scream enough how important it is to apply for job roles with a flawless set of documents. It makes your task easier and more fruitful. This is why designing and submitting perfectly made application documents is priceless for you and your aims.

In recent years, the recruitment process has undergone a lot of advancements which applicants are not aware of. For instance, ATS softwares are currently being used to sieve through CVs using job and profession specific keywords to pick only the top CVs with the highest number of certain keywords, years of experience, qualifications and a couple more metrics. Most applicants are unaware of this which is probably why their CVs get tossed regularly. This explains why some will continuously not make the interview shortlist and be called in for an interview. Lately, we at Transquisite Consulting have trained a unit of HR specialist to help applicants address these problems. Please make use of this service as this unit will not be around for long. They have been trained to rework your CV and other application documents while optimizing same for ATS softwares.  The aim is to ensure that your application documents are beefed up enough to get you called up for interviews more regularly as this is one primary challenge we have found with job seekers in Nigeria. If you need help on this, please CLICK HERE, follow the link below, sign up to the success pool and message one of our career consultants using the Whatsapp button on the page. They are always online and willing to assist round the clock.

Laptop Job Application Scene

9. Never Stop Applying At Least 20-50 Roles Per Day

            Never stop applying and pitching is one fundamental task I advise job seekers to never slack on. You see you loose when you stop because your applications get buried in a sea of new applications and this is not what you want. You want to be consistent at it until someone who will admire your CV sees and shortlists you among candidates who will be attending their job interview in Lagos or anywhere in Nigeria. Apply until you are sick of applying. Then, pick up yourself and continue applying. It is no magic and it does not work better than this unless you have a few connects you can explore. The trick is to always apply so you appear frequently and remain on top of their mind across boards.

10. Demonstrate Value Every Time You Are Called In For An Interview

           With professional and educational certifications, acquired skills comes experience and confidence. Within these contexts are a vast amount of insight and value you can always offer for free. Help is really one of the best ways to hook in clients and it is even one of the best-known ways to secure jobs. In helping, you demonstrate value that hiring managers cannot ignore. In helping, you show in practice that you can help solve your employer’s problem and soothe his/her pain. This can be done in several ways either by pointing to a problem you have discovered about the company about to hire you and how you have in the past solved these sorts of problems for other companies. You can also do this by practically fixing a major problem for free and leaving recommendations as to how they can fix other problems you have discovered with the firm. These are sure avenues to secure company jobs in Lagos or anywhere in Nigeria as this would have shown your employer that you know what you do, can intuitively discover, diagnose and solve corporate problems before It becomes a major pain for them. There are other ways you can demonstrate value when called up for an interview. Google them if you must but ensure you demonstrate and provide value every time you appear in front of a recruiter who may be looking to fill a job vacancy in any of the top companies in Lagos, Abuja or anywhere in Nigeria.

Conclusion

Considering all odds which has not been in any applicant’s favor lately, if you meticulously follow the strategies i have discussed at length with you – the strategies being Obtain a degree (University or College); Find a timeless career that is in demand not a job; Get a professional certification in your line of specialty and consistent with your university degree; Acquire a practical skill in demand; Get at least a years’ experience practicing that skill in an establishment; Optimize your LinkedIn profile to skillfully display all achievements; Build a network; really connect and rapport with HRs, CEOs and other highly placed personnel in your sector; Write a good CV, Cover Letter and have a perfect Career Profile; Never stop applying at least 20-50 roles per day; Demonstrate value every time you are called in for an interview.

You would have been properly setup for success securing a job in Lagos and anywhere in Nigeria.

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