Monday 25 July 2011

Emma on how to get a job - and India

There was a Youth Summit in Wirral, the constituency of Esther McVey MP (Con), and Emma Harrison spoke on how to get a job. The MP has obligingly posted this on her website. It's 6 minutes long, and I've listened to it so you don't have to. She tells the kids who are coming up to leaving school that they should ask themselves how they'd like to be described by, say, a journalist in 10 years time. It's the "have a dream" thing. She says that they should tell people what they want to do, and then they will be helped. She then has three practical tips. First, at interview go in with a smile, stand out. Second, always get someone who knows what they're doing to check your CV. And third, if you can't get a job, create your own job, set up a small business. She gets in the slogan: "My dream is to improve people's lives."
I suppose in 6 minutes it would be difficult to be any more helpful. But it's all a bit random. It's one thing to have a goal, but taking even the first step towards it is impossible for so many youngsters now. And why do Ms Harrison and A4e go on about CVs so much when for most jobs you don't need one? Better to teach people how to fill in an application form properly.

A4e is "improving people's lives" with big new business in India. Roy Newey has said today that he has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with an Indian company called Centum Learning "to train 120 million people". An MoU is not a contract, but it's the precursor to a contract. It will be interesting to see how profitable this will be.


  1. Having seen the (ahem) quality of A4e publications, and received "advice" from them on CVs, my advice to any youngsters leaving school is simple. Go and see your careers adviser, which most schools should have, and get their opinion.

    If you end up being forced in to using A4e, for heaven's sake use a spell check and proof read before sending it out. Remember - There is no right or wrong way, nor is there a magic formula that works for everyone.

  2. A4e are also having one over on the staff they have to TUPE over from CDG: they are sacking most of the higher paid staff members in each office on the basis that they have failed their "assessment", but they are not obliged to say why they failed. The reason is that they are cutting costs as much as possible because they have realised that under the new contract they are now no longer able to make as much money as they did under the last administration. The upshot is that the people left are the under-performing ones everyone complains about who will eventually get sacked for "underperforming". It makes a mockery of TUPE.

  3. Disclaimer on the above comment - I have no knowledge of whether it's true or not.

  4. Its easy enough for someone to say make your own business, first where would you get the funding, there are some places i admit that, But where i live they only give money to their "friends" or friends of friends, and frequently run out of money by the first few weeks of their financial year. The only other way would be to get a loan, and its not that easy if you are unemployed to get a loan.

    I was told my CV was the best they had ever seen and asked me to make a copy for them to use, I got my application forms checked by them, they said it was perfect, yet i still havent got a job. If all they can say is start your own business, I have my business plan an idea about property size location, i worked it out i would need at least £10,000 and even after that there will be no guarentee of it working. Especially in this financial climate.


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