These past 18 months have been awful and the jobs market decimated. It’s been tough. However, if you invert the adage of “What goes up must come down.”, you’re left with the possibility of, potentially, a massive resurgence in employment opportunities as companies finally emerge, blinking, into the sunlight. In short, airlines will fly again and people will be very keen to travel, whether on business, to go on foreign holidays, or even to re-visit their local hostelry, possibly taking time when there to discuss their much-needed home refurbishment as now they have the funds to afford it. (Tradesmen are currently booking jobs in November…)
As we know, last year – and most of this – the world essentially ground to a halt. People advised to stay indoors, avoid travel, and contact with other people resulted in figures released earlier this year by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) showing that more than 813,000 UK jobs were lost. The airline sector shed 62,500 whereas in hospitality the figure was almost half the total – a staggering 43%, or 355,000! Consequently, employers have been reluctant to recruit new staff when dealing simultaneously with existing ones on furlough and a dramatic loss of business. It’s been tough.
Still, if you invert the adage of “What goes up must come down.”, you’re left with the possibility of, potentially, a massive resurgence in employment opportunities as companies finally emerge, blinking, into the sunlight. In short, airlines will fly again, and people will be very keen to travel, whether on business, to go on foreign holidays, or even to re-visit their local hostelry, possibly taking time when there to discuss their much-needed home refurbishment as now they have the funds to afford it. (Tradesmen are currently booking jobs in November…)
Of course, not every sector will bounce back immediately to pre-pandemic business levels. These things will take time and some clientele will inevitably need first to accept the possibility of a Covid-free world. Meanwhile, however, new job opportunities do exist in abundance and now is the time to seek them out – and not simply wait for them to fall into your lap.
There’s a wonderful Scottish organisation which is aimed at, specifically diffident (or ‘quiet’) schoolchildren (14-17) and instilling much-needed confidence and self-belief within them. It’s called The Polar Academy (www.thepolaracademy.org) and experienced and qualified explorer Craig Matheson will first train, then take ten youngsters to Greenland for a 2-week Polar expedition where they learn that, despite doubts, they can do and achieve almost anything. What an experience.
There are now huge gaps within all sectors of the economy, caused mainly by redundancies described above, but offer roles often available because those affected employees don’t want to return. Do you fancy being a heavy-goods trucker? Or even an airline pilot? Huge opportunities in both. (And yes that certainly includes YOU!) Why not? There are multiple opportunities to re-train in a totally different sphere and employers are now almost desperate to bring on new people. In an increasing number of cases, the days of: “Sorry, but without at least five years prior experience….” are gone. And this opens up a whole new vista – particularly for the young.
It’s generally accepted that those within the 24-34 age bracket often find job-searching extremely frustrating. But then this is precisely the age range for whom these opportunities exist! You’re young enough to change direction and if you think like those Polar explorers – simply anything is possible.
Networking can be hugely helpful. Speak or, preferably, meet as many people as possible; tell them about your dreams and aspirations – and listen to those who are more inclined to say: “Yeah! Great idea! Actually, I know someone who might help you…” (The power of networking cannot be overstated and positive people and a meeting like that will help to keep you positive.) If you can back this up by a) keeping a personal note of all current and future meetings/calls that you’ve arranged and b) carrying out full research on the roles that interest you, this will keep you focused. Focus is important.
The digital world offers a vast range of research opportunities. However, if you adopt a strict strategy that focuses purely on your chosen subject or sector, you’ll find your search criteria narrowing and offering more specific routes.
One of the young students on the Greenland expedition wanted to stop dragging her 45kg sledge up a steep ice incline – and go home. Craig calmly told her there was no rescue helicopter, indeed no way back. So, faced with no other option, she got up and finished the climb. She is now a full-time ambassador for the Academy, having proved to herself that she could, in fact, do anything.
- • Always be conscious of the saying: “When one door closes, another one opens.” There are so many doors opening right now.
- • Use all the tools at your disposal. Recognise not only your known skills but start to consider what other things you could excel at.
- • Use the digital world widely as possible – masses of opportunities lie there
- • Use your networking skills and abilities to the full. Never refuse a meeting – of any kind; you simply don’t know what they’ll say, or who might end up being your perfect introduction.