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Friday, April 22, 2005

Buckle up in English and computer knowledge and find a job

In Malaysia, fresh graduates are under pressure to buckle up in their computer and English in order to land a job. There are apparently 18,000 graduates who haven't found a job yet.
Both skills are important, nothing against this. Without English and computer knowledge, one is nothing on the job market today. Even so-called blue-collar workers need this to become competitive on the labour market.
This is the overall message.
The good news is that this is easy to comply with. If you have the cash. Mingle around with English speaking groups, read the English newspapers, listen to English radio or TV and, gasp, take a course. English language courses are the fastest growing business segment in China!
If you have the cash, get a computer, log on to the Internet and get over with it.
I believe that these are the easy roads into the world of working. What is more difficult is the marketing skills, or the attitude and mindset towards working. I don't know how good those are amongst graduates - but I believe that everybody started off fresh.

All in all, I wouldn't worry too much. Malaysia is growing fast and this means that all of those who want to enter the job market will find a job, sooner or later. This differs from European job markets where the economy is stagnant and huge structural shifts are commonplace. There, we have a social welfare system at the edge of collapse. And the challenge to change course after 100 years of such a system.

In Asia, economies are growing. The discussion, for me, only shows that the government is caring for even a small number of fresh graduates. So while the individual case is troublesome for the individual, I think it is solvable pretty quickly, if both sides work together.

(By Asia Business Consulting)