Job Searchers: There are no jobs.

Potential Employers: There are no right people for the jobs.

Now, what and where is the disconnect?

Upon looking into it and having numerous discussions with potential employers, the disconnect seems to be a lack of key skills by most job seekers.

What am I talking about?

We have a lot of young people graduating from various institutions but many of them are not ready for the job market. Don’t get me wrong, this does not necessarily mean that our institutions are not producing skilled personnel; no! It has however become evident over time that most graduates are technically skilled but lack the soft skills, life skills, work skills, entrepreneurial skills and various particular skills like communication skills and tenets like trustworthiness that employers are looking for in these highly technically qualified graduates.

In a recent interaction with the partners we are working with at the DeKUT Office of Career Services, experiences were shared that mostly brought out these realities:

  • Graduates who are not able to communicate well; and at all for some.
  • Graduates who cannot write a proper CV or Resume.
  • Graduates who cannot be trusted with work/ investment.
  • Graduates who cannot present themselves well; from grooming to etiquette.
  • Graduates with superb technical skills but lacking people and general soft skills hence working with teams; something key for most companies is a challenge.
  • Graduates who demonstrate lack of discipline; even on the aspect of time management.
  • Entitled graduates with no regard for their seniors and not patient to grow through challenges.
  • Graduates lacking confidence.
  • Graduates lacking work environment professionalism.

It is therefore paramount that as students go through learning and gaining technical skills at the higher levels of education, they pay attention to the above and moreso, to becoming. As I like saying, the tertiary level of education provides an environment to explore, learn, unlearn, relearn and transform. Pay attention to who you’re becoming in the process because just like wise and informed buyers buy brands, employers are looking for a certain brand of a person. Are you moulding yourself, or allowing yourself to be moulded, to that brand in order to be the right person for the job?

By Wanjiru Kaburu
Author|Communication & Branding Strategist|Coach & Mentor|Editor| Professional Writer & Speaker