A Scottish friend of mine had worked away from his base for some years. He finally decided to come back home to his base in Aberdeen, Scotland. It was not easy for this friend to find his way back into the Aberdeen life – getting a job and reconnecting with friends. In particular, the job hunt was quite tedious for this friend who for convenience, we shall call David.
David was an engineer and tried to apply for a few jobs that he saw in the newspapers but he did not get much luck. He also wondered how it was difficult to find a job in Aberdeen, which is popularly referred to as the Oil Capital of Europe or the Granite City, with a vibrant economy that is fuelled by the oil dug offshore underneath the North Sea.
One day, David was cycling around the hills of Aberdeen. Unfortunately, his bicycle developed a puncture on the rear tyre. He waved down someone he thought might help with a pump to inflate the tyre. As David was inflating the tyre using the borrowed pump, the helper asked him about his paid job and what was his occupation. David stopped inflating the tyre for a moment and said: “In fact, I have just returned back to Aberdeen after seven years away to England and the USA and I am struggling to find a job! Do you know anyone who can employ me, I am an electronics engineer?”
The helper replied very positively: “My neighbour has an oil services company and has been struggling to get an instrumentation engineer with good electronics skills. Can you email me your CV tonight so that I can link you both up?” When the CV was forwarded to the potential employer, David got the job instantly and he was very happy thereafter and that led to his reconnection with his place of birth and the people he grew up to know.
When David was narrating this story to me some eight years ago, he concluded: “Do you know that some of the best jobs don’t find their way into the newspapers? Don’t just wait for adverts in the newspapers alone. Network and ask people if they have jobs you want or if they know someone that can employ you.” This is the secret that many people do not know. Since I knew this, I have been trying to count the number of people that I have seen get good jobs without having seen them advertised in the newspapers – they are very many. Many great jobs do not find their way into the newspapers and other adverts.
So, how can you chance such a job like David if you do not ride a bicycle of if you do not end up with a puncture. Network. Ask. These are the two things you need to do to get such jobs. Get to know a lot of people, especially people that can be of great value. When you are in need of something big or special, do not hesitate to ask those that might help. Now let us be very clear here, we are not talking about becoming a beggar or someone that constantly pesters others about employment. We are talking about the need to sometimes politely ask if others have the opportunities that you need.
As you seek to achieve a lot in life, remember that some of the biggest opportunities do not come through public channels. Who you know, what you ask and who you talk to can sometimes be as important if not more important than reading newspapers every day. If you stick to these new hints and tips about grabbing rare opportunities, then you too will one day get your dream job through a bicycle tyre puncture or some similar event. Good luck as you rise and shine!