Skill Acquisition – The Shortcut to Wealth!
Skill Acquisition – Hey, have you tried getting a job in this beloved country of ours? Menh, it’s a back-breaking-neck-twisting task, almost a hopeless situation which requires not just some sort of high connection but divine intervention as well. Every year, our universities churn out graduates into the labour market – a labour market which is already said to be saturated. Another school of thought will say the market is not only congested but that Nigerian graduates are simply not employable.
I believe both parties are relevant in their analysis; Reasons being that the prevalent “ghost worker” syndrome and falsification of retirement age by a few corrupt public workers will not give room for the very many unemployed masses into the commission. Another known fact is that a large percentage of our certified graduates cannot piece together and write simple sentences or solve basic math hence making them unemployable. Whichever be the case, the bottom line is that the rate of unemployment and underemployment is extremely high in Nigeria.
It’s time to stop patiently waiting and hoping a miraculous job drops on your lap. It’s time to stop wearing out your Sunday shoes submitting CV after CV. There are literally too many qualified persons pursuing few employment openings. Jobs are scarce!
So what do you do? How do you make loads of cash, live in really exotic houses, take choice vacations, drive those extraordinary cars we get to see in Nollywood movies and ultimately, gain financial freedom? How?
Skill acquisition is the answer!
According to the Encarta Dictionary, a skill is described as the ability to do something well, usually achieved through training or experience. Skill acquisition on the other hand involves the development of a skill, a craft, an art, the mastery of a procedure, usually gained through training. Example of skills that can be acquired include: furniture making, photography, hair dressing, graphics design fashion designing, repairs of GSM handsets, computers, etc.
The importance of skill acquisition in third world countries especially Nigeria cannot be overemphasized. Schools of thought have stressed that for a nation to be economically self-reliant, it must necessarily diversify its economy as well encourage the youth to embrace self-employment through appropriate favorable policy and an environment that would facilitate skills acquisition, entrepreneurship and self-reliance. Thank God our blessed government has put in considerable effort by introducing programmes which are aimed at training youths to acquire marketable and applied skills as well as basic scientific knowledge. But what’s your take on it? Are you going to join the “have a skill and be self-employed” wagon or remain in the “I have a degree so I will job hunt” terrain? The choice is yours. Choose Skill acquisition today! To emphasis my point, let me tell you my story:
Some many years ago, in my job hunting days, I heard there was this new shoe cobbler in town that offered excellent services at reduced rates so I took my battered up “job hunting” shoes to meet this guy. On getting there, I was surprised that I was number 13 in a long line of customers waiting to check in their shoes for repairs. Something else shocked me; I noticed the business owner and his six-man team were all physically disabled. They all had challenges with their legs but one look at the Oga’s beaming smile and his protruding stomach told me he was making good money while I, an accountant was parading the streets with my resume. He had skills therefore a business to run. Just simple shoe repair skills. Well, I got back my reinforced shoes a week later and some common sense too.
Have you made up your mind to go for skills? Just in case you haven’t, let me ask you a question:
let’s say a barrister and a furniture maker were to travel to the United States of America in the quest for a better life, who do you think will quickly get a job placement based on their training? The carpenter or Mr. Lawyer? If you choose the lawyer you are wrong! Do not forget that he will have to go through some sort of re-education to enable him practice law in the USA. This could take him several months or even years. He may even get tired and settle for a security job in a restaurant owned by a chef (someone with the catering skills). For the carpenter, there will not be any need for an extensive training as the technical skill needed to assemble a piece of furniture is the same everywhere in the world. He can only get better at his job because of the availability of sophisticated tools.
Am not saying that getting formal education is a waste of time. I personally believe it is one of the best things that can ever happen to anyone. But school education alone does not and will never guarantee success. In some way we have bought the idea that the classroom education is the only key to success. Our families and societies have reinforced this idea to us, but we will have to change our thinking if we are to be truly successful. So get a skill today and build a business around it.
- A skill will get you out of the forever growing unemployed statistics.
- You will become your own boss. You no longer have one Oga overseeing your every move. You control when and how your work is done. It’s true that your customers have a say in the final product, but that’s where their power ends there. How you get it done is entirely up to you.
- You earn more money. Very few people become rich working for someone else.
- You will enjoy variety and grow. Unlike the monotony and repetition found in paid employment, as a freelancer, you job constantly changes as every new client comes with a new challenge. You will continually learn new things, update and harness your skills.
- You will choose your own customers. When you work for someone else, you’re pretty much compelled to serve whoever shows up at your employer’s place of business. Whether it’s a group of mischievous youngsters hoping to purchase school supplies or the old man who shouts at you on the grounds that despite everything he hasn’t exactly made sense of how your services work or the annoying lady who’s called six times in the previous hour with literally the same question: you needed to help them. Since that is your job. As a freelancer, you are the one in control now, you pick who you render your services to.
- You will be self-reliant. No more scrolling down your phone book to locate an Uncle or Aunt to beg for pocket money.
- And so much more!
Go all out and acquire a skill today. Ever wondered why capitalist nations like the United States of America, Germany, China, India and Japan can boast of billionaires in the world today? That’s because they believe in skill acquisition and individual ownership of business.
Truth is: acquiring a skill and being self-employed is an awesome lifestyle choice. Go for it!
If you for whatever reason forget why you acquired a skill and became your own boss, think about what how you were job hunting or your experiences as an over tasked employee.
If that doesn’t work, just come back to this article. I will remind you.
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