WHAT SUCCESSFUL SPORTS STARS DO TO SUCCEED THAT YOU DON’T DO

Do you want to be successful?

You’ve learnt the skills needed to follow your career path, but there’s something missing.
Have you considered a ‘Career & Employability’ coach who should work one-on-one with you over a longer term, say six months?

Why I believe in coaching
I grew up in a small town in south-east Nigeria where getting to the community primary school with my friends was a trek, seven miles in fact. However, we enjoyed going to school because we knew we would get our free fruits and nuts from the orchard, as well as seeing our friends and playing together! Plus, sometimes, after school, we would troop to the nearby crystal-clear stream to wash and swim. The secondary school education which followed, in the same community, was an equally enjoyable experience.

These years of positive educational experiences ended when I moved to the city for my university education.
Through the four years that I spent in university no-one spoke of ‘Careers & Employability’.

“I believe every undergraduate should have a qualified professional who can serve as their employability coach from the beginning of their university days.”

Did (does) your university have this unit? If yes, did (does) it help your career planning? Share your experience with me, please. If it didn’t significantly impact your decisions, I’m sharing effective strategies here and in PART 2  and PART 3 of this discourse for the next generation to follow.

There was no support from a student services unit to cater to the needs of the students after graduation. I was left to figure out everything related to my career by myself. As you might expect, I made many mistakes having to find my way through the job market alone.

My experience of finding employment was a slow move forward through trial and error. No graduate should struggle like this to find their career.

Then, in 2012, I arrived in England for a research degree. There, I discovered, every university had a ‘Careers & Employability’ unit and was assisting students to find their career paths. This was a revelation.

So here we are now. I have used my experiences, positive and challenging, to help students prepare for the reality of job hunting. The result is graduates finding well-paid jobs which fit their educational attainment level.
With ten years’ experience in higher education, working as a university lecturer in Nigeria and the UK, I am well equipped to advise students.

I believe every undergraduate should have a qualified professional who can serve as their employability coach from the beginning of their university days. By not having one, too many students struggle with the same path of trial and error I experienced. They face the false belief that you need to figure out your career options by yourself; this is a mistake.

So how do the stars do it?
Imagine a footballer, boxer, or Formula 1 driver, trying to succeed on their own.Imagine if they decided they didn’t need a coach.

Why do so many of us do this with our careers?
What a good career/employability coach will do is guide the student to develop their employability skills in three major categories before graduation:

  • transferable skills
  • technical knowledge and experience
  • quantified results (if you don’t know what these are we’ll find out later)

Everywhere today the formal job market has become so competitive that, unless you take this strategic approach towards preparing for your post-graduate work life, you will struggle to land the job you deserve.
So, what can you do to save yourself from the results of not being prepared? It’s all down to coaching.

Stick around to find out more
I’ll be back with part 2 & part 3 of this discourse to give you my tips.
I’ll take you on a journey to show my steps and strategies, putting you at the front of the queue for the well-paid job you deserve.
If possible, don’t wait until you graduate. These career and employability strategies will yield the best results if you implement them while still in university.

If, however, you are already on your career path – either jobless or looking to transition to a new role – these tips can also help you.
Whether you have questions about this article, or just can’t wait to find out more…