Overpopulation and urbanization has brought with it so many problems that resources have become inadequate to suffice most of the population residing in the cities and urban areas. One of the problems brought by this dynamic change is unemployment. It is almost tongue tying to tell a young boy or girl that there is a bright future in education when they have at their disposal dozens and dozens of examples of fellows who graduated with degrees and diplomas just roaming with no employment to be found. Sooner or later they will be looking to thieves and illegal dealers for role models.
Perhaps that said and done, we need to revise what it means to say education is our future. Back in the day our parents were picked to start working before they even finished their various studies. Jobs were abundant as the employing industry had so much vacant posts due to lack of literate and well qualified human resource. One needed not be creative or competent to acquire a job. Once you had the qualification you had the job. It was a matter of who could do the job and not who could do it best or who has a relation or who can trade their good legs for the boss’ taking.
JOB SEEKER: My name is Thomas Tembo; I have a diploma in journalism’ that sentence would be cut by the employer in mid air.
EMPLOYER: Don’t bother to finish, you have got the job, come tomorrow and start working’
JOB SEEKER: My name is Thomas Tembo; I have a diploma in journalism, I graduated in the year bla bla bla (he spends 15 minute delivering a well rehearsed speech exalting an already well polished profile…in addition to that a resume has already been submitted to the human resource manager)
EMPLOYER: Am sorry we can’t take you. We are looking for those with 5 to 10 years experience. Thank you for coming though. [In his head he is like, you are male, you got no relation here and… and you look like a threat to me with those papers]
Ok, forget the moral decay rocking our society. The point is, today employment is most hard to find as compared to the past decades. Somewhere along the line things changed and it became the job seeker had to struggle for employment and not the employer as was the case some years ago. Despite the employing system being flooded with a majority of old folks I believe the solution to unemployment might be lying among the victimized group itself; the unemployed, which mostly is made up of the youth.
If only the getting employed attitude could be a little bit given less attention and direct the attention at empowering individuals with creativity which could in turn create job opportunities. Instead of competing for the same jobs everyone is looking for, creativity as its name suggests could create other avenues and new jobs in the process. Competition in its form does not really encourage free will creativity as people always try to get ahead of their opponents and not maximize their maximum potential. Therefore I believe promoting creativity among youth would have more yields than sending them to school with an attitude biased towards getting employed. Things have changed and to get employed by someone these days is not easy. Therefore, for one to progress there is need for one to be creative enough so as to be able to create something out of nothing rather than compete for the available inadequate resources. In the creative world opportunities don’t get extinct while in the competitive world in addition to opportunities being so limited one has to either end up a winner or a loser and unfortunately most of us end up on the losing side.
Imagine if those guys who thought of starting the Coca-cola group just looked up to the government and other already established companies for employment. Imagine how many jobs would have been lost. If the Mulli brothers didn’t think of opening up their ventures, imagine if Gospel Kazako did not come up with the Zodiak idea in the first place. How many people would still be scrambling for the limited employment in the same spheres everyday?
If only the motto ‘education is your future’ meant more than going to school and later getting employed for Malawians. If only the motto meant even creating some of the opportunities, or entrepreneurship in a layman’s language. Because much as jobs might be scarce it does not mean that opportunities are extinct. It is only in recent years that we have seen a number of entrepreneurs coming into the industry. But still most Malawians still live in a 1970 mindset and haven’t yet grabbed the ‘be your own boss’ concept yet.
Let us say if the venture of one entrepreneur carries with it 3 to four employees, one would go for that as means of reducing unemployment rates as compared to the competition approach where tens of thousands of people scramble for one job and in the end only one gets the job.
The responsibility to create the jobs we most die for is not with the government or other policy makers. It is our own for the taking. It’s time to create. Think creative and not competitive. We can be the generation to beat the odds.