Archive for April, 2010

Looking for work? First read this!

Sunday, April 11th, 2010

From the CEO”s desk…

The three weeks from March 20th up to the 2nd of April (2010), was one of the most dissappointing for me.

After having burnt my fingers once, I decided not to go by the qualifications prospective employees claimed to have on paper, but to assess them and make the discovery myself.

So it began… On-line ads followed by email evaluations, then telephone interviews and finally,  I ‘invited’ the ‘top 6’ applicants to participate in the written assessment.  Their success at this assessment would determine their acceptance to the practical test.

Well, to start with, only 4 turned up for the written test.  All graduates (or nearly graduates) from various universities in Sri Lanka and abroad.

The written tests was a disaster! just TWO of the participants managed to scrape through with a below-average mark.  Not willing to come to conclusions based on this, we proceeded with the practicals. After a great struggle, they completed the 90-minute test within a little more than 3 hours!

But here was the good thing about it.  I (being from a teaching background), recognised that these two participants had the knack for programming and could be coached to the mark.  So after the formalities, they were hired.

These folks knew what they were heading for.  This is what was promised to them.

1. Training – ebooks, videos, webinars, classroom sessions and on-site.
2. Good remuneration after training.
3. Allowance during training
4. Opportunity to communicate with clients worldwide.
5. Opportunity to learn the latest technologies.

And guess what happened… These people were expected to start work on the 1st of April. But on the first day, one employee emailed me stating that she couldn’t make it to work as she thought it was a holiday, and that she had other programmes scheduled. I couldn’t imagine this attitude. So I decided to mail her a task to carry out while she was away from office. She claimed to have tried but failed. With that she quit. And on the second day, the other guy claimed that the work was too hard and stated in his mail to me that he wouldn”t be coming to work in the future! Is this only Sri Lankan, or is it a worldwide phenomena? I wonder…

So dear reader, if you are looking for work, please don’t make this same blunder.  This affects YOU more than the company you’re letting down. It affects your career record.

So here are some key things to note when looking for work.

  • First, know what you’re heading for.
  • Know your self. Ask your self if you are a quitter or are truly committed.
  • Check your attitudes towards others. Are you selfish? Are you ignorant about social responsibilities? Do you know the impact of leaving a company without formal notice?
  • Are you ready to work? Don’t just look for work because you are desperate for money or because your colleagues are looking for work. You should know if YOU are ready to work. If not, forget it.
  • Agree on a salary and don’t say ‘yes’ to everything just because you’re desperate.
  • Is this the kind of work you’re looking for? Make sure that you’ll enjoy what you’re going to do. If not, do everyone a favour – don’t join.
  • What does it take to be working? Do you have to travel? Does your work demand that you work from home as well? If you don’t have what it takes, don’t waste your employer’s time.
  • Be a life-long learner. Never say that you’ve finished learning… Consider it your obligation to learn constantly and upgrade your knowledge.
  • Be honest. Don’t brag about matters that you can’t handle.

I hope you benefit from this.