*Get it right...

Following the last edition where we x-rayed some of the major challenges Nigerian graduates faced in the labour market, I told us 'there is no country in the world that has 100 per cent workable system to cater for the teeming population of youths graduating from institutions of higher learning'.

Against this backdrop, you would recall a recent story of a young promising Master Degree holder who made the news after venturing into scavenging business despite his qualifications. For many, it's the craziest decision for someone of his caliber to take. Imagine a graduate who ought to be working in high profile organisation picking scraps on the street in the guise of fending for himself. Indeed, it was really a crazy idea but the best-ever for this time.

Today, many graduates find it difficult to distinguish between productivity and workability. The former has been misconstrued to mean that one is being productive while working. For instance, waking in the early hours of the day to catch up with the first bus at the terminal that will take you to your workplace is productivity since you're not being lazy like others who might still be on the bed at the time, No.

The word 'productivity' is far beyond the rote system of civil service where you do the same thing repeatedly and expect different result. Productivity is not just a life style but an attitude you must cultivate overtime. It is more deeper than what you see in the circular world where everyone not working is termed 'lazy'. Laziness is not inability to work but inability to think out of the boxes. You may be working and not being productive but you can't be productive and not be working. So, it is important for us to understand the basics rather than hovering around the surface.

'Why graduates fail'

In one of our previous editions, I categorically told us that, scoring high grades in high school doesn't equate doing well in reality. The essence is to open our insight to areas we neglect most of the time. For instance, a large percentage of Nigerian graduates would rather prefer to choose white-collar jobs to entrepreneurship if you take a cross-sampled opinion.

Guess why?

They want a place fully-air-conditioned, less stressful, and well-furnished with goodies than going the way of Yazid Surajo, the young Nigerian Master degree holder who chose scavenging to staying idle on the street. The truth is that, there are no jobs anywhere except the ones you create for yourself. We can't dispute the fact that government both present and past has failed us and will continue to fail (not a curse but the golden truth) if we don't create alternative mechanisms to address 'why graduates fail'.

The way forward is simple, start rendering value in your little way. Don't wait till you get your dream job before you start being productive. Capacity building is key to solving the problem of unemployment in Nigeria. What you have in you is spacious enough to build others and vise-versa. We only need to start doing the right thing to get it right.

Join me next week for another mind-blowing edition.

By Arogbonlo Israel

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