Mentor Minutes

Should I accept being underemployed?


Should I accept being underemployed?

Sanjay Arora

Q.I am an MBA 2019 pass-out from a good B-school. But I have not managed to get a “golden” package or job profile so far. In an off-campus placement, I have been offered something far less than I deserve. Should I wait for some time for another job or accept whatever is being offered? I am very anxious because it is already October?

A.This is a dilemma faced by many and you are not alone in this. With the current depressing news about the markets, many youngsters are getting stressed because jobs being offered are not matching their qualifications.  

There are three criteria that you must keep in mind before taking the plunge for a new job. 

Brand of the organisation: It is essential to know that organisation’s culture and values match your own. For example, in case you believe that reflections are important and critical, perhaps you should not join an organisation that swears by agility. If the brand is globally known, then it is even better

Growth prospects: For the first job you should join the organisation that makes you learn because it is through learning that growth will evolve. So, look out for career- growth stories, past employee experiences. Also ask the HR regarding career growth opportunities. It is better to prioritise pace of growth over CTC.

Culture and leadership: The culture of the company should be progressive and employee friendly. That is an important aspect but is often overlooked. Another factor which is an acid test for culture is the diversity element. Does the organisation encourage diversity in thoughts, age, race, religion and gender?

Many of you find pay packet luring and get sucked into “High CTC” racket. The trick here is to expect a fair compensation but a lot of growth rather than settle for high CTC and not have adequate information on growth

If you have weighed in the three parameters listed above, you should be able to make an informed decision to take up this offer or otherwise.

If the offer is not meeting all three criteria, it will be a great idea to join an internship and go for on-line courses in upcoming fields like AI/ big data/ Augmented Reality/ Blockchain and so on to improve your CV and wait for the right opportunity.

Focus, breathe and tread towards future!

Q.I completed my five years BTech+MBA integrated course from a highly reputed institute in Chandigarh. I was a day-scholar among 20 per cent of the total students who got a campus placement for Rs 6lakh plus CTC in headquarters of a good company in Noida.  Just a few weeks after my joining, I hate the city, traffic and commute time. I am home-sick and thinking every day of coming back to my hometown. What should I do?

A. Congratulations! In spite of the unfavourable macro-economic conditions, you have got a placement. In the current circumstances, it is a big achievement.

The first job is all about learning. Also remember that Your career is a lattice, not a ladder. There is never just one path to achieve your career aspirations. In the intial few years, you have to let it flow. In case you put pressure on yourself to pick the ‘right’ path it is completely unnecessary.

As you move from smaller towns to bigger ones, you are confronted with a different type of life — more people, traffic and so on. Also, when we stay on our own first time in our life, there is a huge amount of social learning, starting from laundry and cleaning to basic cooking. Your body and mind take some time to accept these additional responsibilities.

Please remember that life is hard, some people may come across as rude and conditions are many times unpredictable. The Indian parents don’t let you feel any of it during your growing up years. While it is good for a child, for an adult it can be a very limiting experience.

You gain independence and self-dependence when no one is around to guide you all the time. You are the only one responsible for the consequence of your actions. This can be learnt only through experience and not by someone else’s speech or their experiences

My point is, there is much to learn about the world that can’t be done by sitting in the comfort of your home. While our culture is excellent in case of interpersonal relationships, it simply inhibits developing an independent personality. Go out and live your life. And while you are at it, you will have the independence to try out everything you ever wanted to do with your life. You won't get a chance to experience such a beautiful phase of life again.

Over time, be willing to adjust your destination. All your professional life will be around building competency and a brand; discarding it to come to hometown will be very costly in the long run.

The writer is chief mentor, Maven

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