I am not one for the doom-and-gloom news and I prefer to find solutions to problems rather than discuss issues in detail and then close out the article by passing the buck or leaving our fate to someone else with hopes they provide us with opportunities.
I refuse to wait for others to create opportunities, especially in the digital age. Now, we have zero limits when it comes to learning new skills, accessing clients or working with companies around the world.
I read an article over the weekend, talking about “unemployment and the brand drain” and I could only shake my head.
Here’s what puzzles me.
In Trinidad and Tobago, we are still learning outdated skills for outdated industries and job-hunting like it’s the early 2000s.
How is anybody going to find success when nothing we are doing is relevant to the world we live in today?
Whilst there are many things the government, public and private sectors could be doing to improve the working conditions in TT, let’s focus on controlling what we can control and take some personal responsibility. The reality is that we can learn new skills and work for companies or get clients in other countries and get paid in other currencies.
Believe it or not, it's possible and that’s a choice you could make for yourself.
So you want to know how that’s possible?
Let me give you five tips that can give you some help when applying for jobs in 2022 that you are not doing right now.
1. Create an ATS-friendly resume
2. Update your LinkedIn profile and learn how to use it
3. Create a personal website
4. Learn how to build your personal brand
5. Get great at networking and making connections online
Are you trying to be fancy and cute by making all of your resumes in Canva or hiring graphic designers to make a pretty one for you?
While that may be okay when needing to e-mail your resume directly to a recruiter, it’s the absolute worst type of resume to upload to job boards or platforms. That’s because HR departments around the world are using applicant-tracking systems (ATS software) during the hiring process to collect, sort, scan and rank the job applications they receive for their positions. Your fancy Canva resumes are not ATS-compliant.
Learn how to make it yourself or hire a professional to create one for you.
Update your LinkedIn profile
LinkedIn is the number-one job platform and B2B social network in the world. It is the only place in the entire world where you can type in the name of the company and directly speak to the hiring managers for companies.
If you want to work for any company in the world, type in the company on LinkedIn, connect with people in the organisation and build relationships and you will open up the doors of opportunities to work for them or do business with them.
Creating a personal website that has your resume and portfolio and learning SEO will allow you to be Googleable. When recruiters are looking for new candidates or doing their research on you, they will be able to learn all about you from your website. This increases your global visibility.
Stand out from the crowd, learn how to intentionally create your personal brand and this will help you land a new job or promotion at your job. Your personal brand is your digital reputation and will amplify the skills and work you do offline.
Networking and making connections
Your network is your net worth and because of the internet, you can build a global network with just your laptop and an internet connection. Start joining forums, groups, and conversations on LinkedIn within your industries and making connections. Real connections will start tagging you in opportunities that fit your skills or sending work your way because they trust you.
Folks, this is my eighth year in Trinidad. I knew nobody besides my family before moving here. Learning in-demand digital skills, starting my business, Droid Island, and leveraging LinkedIn for networking has been my recipe for success to date.
I have received more job offers today because of these tips than I ever have as a job-seeker.
So stop job-hunting like it’s the year 2000, learning irrelevant skills and the world is going to open up for you right here in TT without feeling like you need to leave to gain opportunities.
Keron Rose is an online business coach who helps Caribbean entrepreneurs build their digital presence and monetise their platforms. Learn more at Keronrose.com or listen to the Digipreneur FM podcast.