So many kids – aged 23-26 today have a serious problem on their hands –

they have a degree which is not bankable, they have a loan taken to get that degree, and they have no place to stay in a Metro!

Vow! Welcome to the American lifestyle. Kids who have left their houses to go to a ‘City’ to get a degree – quite likely an MBA are wondering what to do.

The actual scenario may be a little different, but it is somewhat like this:

Here is a boy or girl from a not very well off family who has been conned into doing an MBA with a huge bank loan. Now that the results are out and there is no job…what does one do?

Well here are some tips which I thought would be useful:

1. Go get a job, any job: Amazing how people can sit at home and twiddle their thumbs WAITING to see what to do in life! Man that is NOT DONE. Go get a job, any job. If you think an MBA degree should get you a Rs. 500,000 job at the least, get real. I have seen MBAs working on a starting salary of Rs. 6500 (year 2009) and are not badly off for it!

2. Stop thinking sales job should not be done: There is a huge set of MBA students who have unfortunately got into a mindset that sales jobs are bad. Sales guys get in the moolah – so get real guys, selling is not so bad after all. If you ever want to be a CEO, go and learn how to sell. Other tasks can be outsourced, but if you have a product, YOU NEED to be passionate about it. Learn selling skills is PARAMOUNT, especially if you plan to be on your own.

3. Try to defer your student loans: Just check out the possibility of deferring your student loan repayment. The bank may agree to charge you interest for the deferred period, but at least the day to day tension is postponed. If your parent has given the guarantee, keep them informed.

4. Ensure that your vehicle insurance, medical insurance and life insurance payments are up to date! These are the easiest of payments to skip, and tempting too. Do not delay or neglect to pay – if you break your leg you still need life insurance, do you not? If you die, you do not want your parent to pay off the student loan, do you?

5. Keep your chin up: Learn to laugh about what is happening in your life. I am sure that this is easier said than done. I recently heard of a client whose daughter was in coma for 9 days. Would not have been easy, but he was holding his chin up. So remember, tough times do not last, tough people do.

6. Move back to your Dad’s house: If you have moved from your town to a city to study or take up a job, seriously reconsider moving back. It is all right to come to town for interviews instead of incurring rent. This is really a tough call – it is a mix between wanting to be where the action is and saving some money. Tough call kids, but you have to take the call.

7. Join groups – alumni, HR groups, – just any group to keep in touch with the corporate world. All colleges need such groups which meet – accounting, finance, just about anything. There is some chance of meeting a potential employer!

8. Some small companies will happily let you work for free! Well if they offer you Rs. 5000 per month, do not get into a ‘I am a MBA…’ kind of aggressive mode. Just take it. Yesterday heard of a kid who moved from Rs. 5k a month in a production house (media companies are perhaps the worst exploiters!) in the year 2007 to freelancing today at a price of Rs. 80,000 a month – yes on an assignment basis! It pays to have a worn out sole and time in the sun.

9. Learn some skills: Public speaking, dramatics, excel, power-point, basics of business finance, sales marketing, written communication – all are useful skills. See what you can learn for free, and what you can learn for a pittance. Learn everything that you think is transferable…all this can add up.

10. Be clean: Say no to drugs, tobacco, alcohol – all these have a terrible way of catching up in your corporate life later on. Be clean, be clean, be clean, need one say more. No drunken driving, no getting into trouble for anything at all.

11. If you rely just on job websites for a job, you are doomed! Be on job sites, be on networking sites, be on facebook, be on LinkedIn, just connect, call, meet and get a job. If you still cannot get a job (be honest to yourself, not to me) there is something seriously wrong with your attempt.

A 8% growth economy creates enough jobs. You will find yours surely, best of luck kids.

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  1. Thought of adding 2 more points from my experience. Having passed out during 2001-02 IT bust and being a IT post graduate, i think i can relate.

    1. Get a subscription of that unheard of news paper called ’employment news’. Believe me there are lot of posts/openings which you will not find in the swanky job sites but find it there. Like Bank clerical, PO, defence, govt job etc.. and who knows, you may even get in interested in trying your hand for civil services too. These opening’s take time to fill up and competition is not that great ( I am not talking of numbers here, numbers are in fact overwhelming!). But when the chips are down, even a 20k p.m job with govt quarter and other perks isn’t that bad. You can always come back to the crazy world of private sector later…

    2. Don’t forget to keep reading and practising the standard 5-10 math’s, reasoning, english etc… yes in a highly intellectual country such as our’s, we still expect our MBA post graduates to pass these exams before they can be given well paying jobs to fleece and smile at the customer, both at the same time 🙂

    Regards
    Raja

  2. Hi Subra,
    Very good post…and very apt for a lot of people out there. One thing i routinely see in many interviews i conduct – there is this apathetic behavior to read the newspaper and relate to what they learnt in class. Can’t get them to tell me how GDP is calculated, and they cant tell the difference in GDP figure and GDP growth rate. Often, it’s the so-called super brains with 9.0/10 GPA! Life gives them a sudden wakeup call after MBA…that they begin to value words like the ones above! Alas…thats’ youth everywhere!

    Cheers,
    Manu

  3. Aptly mentioned Subra!!!!

    First 2 points, “put the nail in the coffin”…being an MBA (2011 batch, and not from a premier institute, but learned quite a few practicle things there) I always knew, I can not waste my time and can not affort to be an unemployed burden on my parents…

    So, here it’s what I did: immideately after my exams, I approached my institure trustees (I was in good books for them) and got job in Mktg -cum- Promotional dept. gave my 100% (which they still remember)..
    Then came an opportunity with a small firm (intot he never heard field called “Business Intelligence”); my childhood friend recommended to join them..learned lot of things during the stay of 1.5 Yrs…had first International Exposure….and when time was right…moved to a well known organization now…

    During this fight…I have never ever given on my hope, ability to work hard…

    I tell this to everyone who comes to me for a piece of advice (after all, people measure success with the paycheck that you take home) MBA is just a degree….you as person will bring meaning to it.. If you don’t know what to do, them doing MBA will not help you either….

    The only thing I see today, is students from my generation wants high paying jobs with cabin in place for them and red carpet….very few believes in sweating it out in the middles..

    And as Raja mentioned: today we are completly ignorent about PSU’s.. Banks which offer you security…

    Jitendra

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