Saturday, November 29, 2008

Talking CV

TalkingCV is another revolutionary 3 dimensional personal profile consisting of video, audio and the textual CV. This unique product assists both recruiters and candidates by replacing the traditional first round interview, streamlining the recruitment process.

Talking CV is similar to Visual CV, both have their strong and weak points. Either way, candidates can now market their skills to potential employers using a variety of methods.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

How To Use Storytelling For Your Executive Resume

In today's competitive job market, the executive resumes with the most compelling, hard-hitting career stories will get the attention and much desired interviews.

When was the last time you took a close look at your executive resume? How do you know if it is telling the right story for your career?

Ask yourself these questions:

  • Are you making potential employers figure out or guess your career/job target?
  • Is your executive resume too "me-oriented"?
  • Are you choking readers with pages and pages of resume content?
  • Are you only telling employers what you are paid to do?
  • Does your executive resume fail to tell employers what makes you stand out?
  • Is your executive resume missing the "beef" - no career achievements mentioned?
If you have answered yes to any of the above questions, you are making your job search process much harder than it needs to be.

Your executive resume is a strategic marketing document and the product you are selling is YOU. At first glance, your executive resume must tell the reader - who you are, the unique value you bring to the table, and demonstrate through supporting achievement statements how well you performed in previous positions.

Don't make the mistake of creating a career obituary that is a laundry list of job responsibilities and task-driven statements. Make sure that your executive resume's story contains the following components:

What you can do for employers - qualifications, expertise, and personal brand

How many times you have done it before - length and breadth of career and experience

How well you have done it for other employers - bottom-line impact and quantifiable results

Check out this example of a manufacturing executive resume that tells a very strong career story.

Abby M. Locke, Executive Director of Premier Writing Solutions (, is a Nationally Certified Resume-Writer and Personal Brand Strategist who helps senior-level professionals and C-level executives achieve personal success with customized, branded executive resumes and career marketing documents.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Quality of Nigerian Primary School Teachers

According to a recent report released by the World Bank, 57 out of every 100 primary school teachers in Nigeria are unqualified. Anyone that cares deeply about the future of Nigeria should be outraged. By jeopardizing the future of school children with unqualified teachers, Nigeria is jeopardizing its own future.

It is an open secret that the public school system in Nigeria is in shambles. Private schools have sprung up everywhere trying to fill the void. No nation can survive or will be able to compete in the 21st century without a strong public education system. Perhaps if public officials (Governors, Senators, House Members etc) are required by law to enroll their children in public schools, this issue will get the kind of attention it deserves.

Are the children in these schools being prepared for jobs that pay a living wage? Are they going to be prepared for the 21st century workplace? Will they be employable or would they become a menace to the society at large. Your guess is as good as mine.

I leave you with the famous saying - "If you think education is expensive, try ignorance"

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

VisualCV - Next generation CV at your finger tips

With the advent of VisualCV, CVs as we know them would never be the same again. Visual CV makes a traditional resume come alive with video, pictures and a portfolio of work samples etc.

VisualCV brings both the CV and the resume into the modern Web 2.0 world by transforming the way in which the CV data is presented, accessed and shared. Visit the visualcv website to learn more about this amazing tool.

Will leave you with a thought from Abraham Lincoln - "Things may come to those who wait... but only the things left by those who hustle"

Saturday, September 6, 2008

The Ber Months are here

Many of us make "career new year resolutions" at the beginning of the year. We set career goals for the New Year. Well we have entered the famous "ber months", the four months that close out the year.

The first "ber" month, September is a good time to assess where we are from a career goals standpoint, because we may still have a chance to work on our strategy so we can meet our career goals for this year.

If you are like most of us, you probably have not met your goals for the year - this is not a time to make excuses or look for someone to blame. Get on with it, we are rooting for you.

Remember: "If you think you can, you can. If you think you can't, you're also right." - Mary Kay Ash

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Obsolete IT Curriculum in Nigerian Universities

There was a little noticed article in the Nigerian newspapers recently. Apparently the curriculum being used to teach the next generation of Emeagwalis in Nigeria is obsolete. This is probably not news, hence there was no call for a Senate/House of Reps hearing to discuss this finding or any noticeable outrage from public commentators.

Why is it that despite the huge increase in the price of crude oil and the booming African, specifically Nigerian economy, there is no noticeable progress in the education and health sectors? What would it take to fix the problems in these sectors? Do we need to call the colonial masters (the Brits, the French) back to help us revive these sectors? Even though that thought may be untenable to most Africans, the truth is that during the colonial era, we had good infrastructure and the system worked.

At a minimum we should be exceeding the standards (i.e., the system worked) set during the colonial era to honour the bravery of the great men and women that fought for national independence. The future of Nigeria, indeed Africa depends on these students that are being trained using obsolete curriculums. How are they going to compete in the global talent market?

Quoting Mr. Emeagwali: "Intellectual Capital Not Money alleviates Poverty" We hope our leaders are listening.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Investor Relations - Emerging Discipline in Emerging Africa

Per the National Investor Relations Institute (NIRI), Investor relations is a strategic management responsibility that integrates finance, communication, marketing and securities law compliance to enable the most effective two-way communication between a company, the financial community, and other constituencies, which ultimately contributes to a company's securities achieving fair valuation.

Investor Relations is a little known but rapidly growing discipline in Africa, though we are still behind the developed economies of Asia, Europe and North America. However the increasing globalization of African economies has resulted in local markets opening to global investors.

African companies are increasingly transferring their primary listings abroad or have dual listings, consequently local and international shareholders and stakeholders are demanding greater transparency and disclosure. The increasing complex regulatory environment, together with a global focus on governance, reporting and accountability is also accelerating the growth of the investor relations discipline. Investor Relations requires a robust understanding of the complexities of the financial markets and ample media savvy.

There will be a continued scarcity of experienced Investor Relations professionals for the foreseeable future, consequently many organizations are already training in-house staff to prepare them for this important role. Furthermore, we believe there will be more demand for Investor Relations professionals, as African capital markets become more mature, and investors and other stakeholders demand for more accountability, transparency and full disclosure increase significantly

For those interested in learning more about this discipline, you may want to swing by NIRI’s site, and the popular IR blog - Investor relations musings - devoted entirely to the practice of Investor Relations. Enjoy.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Welcome to Blog

Welcome to our blog. Starting today, we are beginning a conversation with visitors to our portal. This blog will cover every topic from career development strategies to the state of the employment market in Africa. Africa is currently undergoing a renaissance, and we all have a chance to be part of this, and should endeavor to do so. We all have a choice: either to watch things happen or to make things happen.

We would like to share these words from a great statesman, with you all:

“It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena; whose face is marred by the dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions and spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best, knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who, at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly; so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory or defeat.”

That was Teddy Roosevelt speaking at the Sorbonne in 1910, but he could have just as easily been speaking to you and I. Friends, we all know those professional critics and perpetual naysayers that tell us: “It’s no use; it can’t be done. Don’t try. Give up. Why do you have to stand out? Just be smart and give up.”

They are an all–too–common unfortunate fact of life at work and they populate our corridors, break rooms, and company cafeterias. They lurk there, with their drag–down message of gloom and doom in the hopes of ensnaring us in their misery.

But it’s important for us to know: the naysayers are wrong, and we don’t have to buy into their message of “settling for less” and underachievement.
Because we’ve been blessed with talent; because we’ are very fortunate to be alive at a great time in the history of the African continent, and because we are one of the educated professionals in a continent where literacy rate is lower than any other continent, we have a higher purpose than the compensation that comes with our job.

We are asking all of us today to reach deeper. To use the great talents we have been given; the skills and abilities and experience you’ve developed over the years; the guts and courage that are so much a part of us, to be even greater.

We are asking all of us to make a difference in our own lives: to find that next great job that will make us even better; to stretch ourselves farther than we think it's possible; to be that person we have always known we were capable of becoming.

We are asking all of us today to be a hero. Our own hero. In the words of Barack Obama: "Yes we can", indeed, Yes we can!