• Makheni Zonneveld

#1 Future Readiness and Job hunting

Updated: Jan 13, 2019

This post is part of the free Future Readiness service. This is the 1st in the 5-part series of answers to the first question. If you have not yet subscribed please click here here or watch the 4-minute video on the homepage of makheni.com.

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Dear Makheni

My aunt advised me to subscribe to your list and ask my future readiness questions. I am a 24-year job-seeker. I am an unemployed Business Management graduate from Springs near Johannesburg. In the past 18 months I have tried everything to find employment. How can future readiness help me in my search for employment? Any job will do. Linda (not her real name)


Dear Linda

Congratulations! You have just earned a free NBI® questionnaire by being the first to kick off this service. Thank you for your question. This service cannot exist without questions from subscribers. I will send you the link to the online questionnaire as soon as I set a date for the next group coaching webinar. The webinar is free but attendees pay for the questionnaires so you are covered.

In asking your question you stated several very important issues. I would like to address these different issues and more. It will take more than this one blog to give you a comprehensive answer. We all know that the best way to eat an elephant is one elephant burger at a time.

I choose NOT to do the usual which is, to only give you tips on how to improve your CV and how to conduct yourself at an interview. Such tips are useful but I firmly believe that success at any venture starts with a good foundation. The purpose of this first instalment of your answer is to start laying the foundation brick by brick and help you with more than just a few tips.

You say you have tried everything. Whenever people say that they have tried everything, I ask them exactly what they have tried and most of the time what I hear is that they have done the same thing over and over again. We both know that doing the same thing and expecting a different result is insanity. You have clearly demonstrated that you are not insane by asking this question because this means you would like to get off the bus that got you nowhere in the past 18 months. Mazel tov!

I will not deviate from the foundation of each and every intervention I have ever offered in the past 19 years. That foundation is rooted in this truth:

I do not believe this just because Einstein said it but because it is true. In Formal Logic, believing or adopting an idea just because another human being said is a common fallacy called ‘The Fallacy of Authority’. You should always have your thinking cap on even when you read what I write to make sure you don’t commit that fallacy.

I whole-heartedly believe that to solve any problem or change any situation whether it as at individual, team, organisational or even at national level, we need a different level of thinking. You cannot effectively change behaviour without first addressing the mentality behind the behaviour. It all starts with thinking, then comes feeling or even emotion and only then does behaviour manifest. The way we perceive any problem is always part of the problem so solving any problem starts with seeing it in a better light. It starts with reframing the problem. I am not referring to the nonsensical idea that reframing a problem means referring to it as a ‘challenge’. That is not reframing but renaming. Renaming does not change anything. Try calling a lion a lamb and see if it won't make a juicy lunch out of you.

You see yourself as a job-seeker. Reframing can change that. Old frame. ‘I am a job-seeker’. New frame ‘I am looking for ways to sell my skills to add value to whoever buys my skills’.

The main difference between selling your services in the new economy is that the market for your services is not limited by geographic location. You can work for a company that is thousands of miles away just like you can sell your services to clients who are thousands of miles away without leaving your home or office. That also means your competitors are all over the world.

Back to reframing - a person with an old frame behaves very differently from a person with the new frame. A new frame helps you to look at your situation with a new lens. The old frame is the victim lens and the new frame is the possibility lens. I have called myself a Possibilitarian for two decades. Contrary to popular belief, I did not coin that word – it was coined by Norman Peale – I only popularised it.

Linda, my goal is to equip you to become a possibility thinker and over and above being equipped to sell your skills more effectively in the new economy. One of the causes of anxiety these days is the fact that a task, a job, a department, a whole business can be replaced by an app. Those who will not only survive but will thrive in the workplace of the future are those who cannot be replaced by an app. The only way to you will not get replaced by an app or an algorithm or a robot is to be able to do what no software can do. In fact you will always be in demand. No software can match the software under your hat.

Contrary to popular belief, although technical skills are important, the skills that will always guarantee success in any work and in any business are thinking skills and people skills. That is why in accompanying entrepreneurs, organisations, teams and individuals into the future I focus on thinking skills and people skills.

So what?

Please take pen and paper and answer the following:

Since the world is looking for solutions, what problem do I, Linda, solve?

What value would I add to anyone who invests my skills?

What skills does the marketplace need?

What relevant skills do I already have?

What relevant skills do I still need to acquire?

Who could possibly invest in my skills? Do I have to sell my skills to an employer or are there other options?

Linda, you are only 24 years old so most of your working life is going to happen in a different workplace than the one we are accustomed to. We don’t know what that workplace will look like because it may not even be a place. In the next few weeks I would like to prepare you to succeed in that unknown future. Once you realise that we actually know a lot about the future, it will stop being a scary place and be an exciting place. I don’t know about you but I’m excited about the future.

I hope I have given you enough to chew on for now. In the next elephant burger I will expand on the questions above.

Till next week.

Makheni your Future Readiness Coach

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Makheni Zonneveld has extensive experi-ence in helping organisations, teams, individuals and entrepreneurs with real transformation. She employs these communications tools: Online and Face2Face coaching, speaking, training, storytelling and writing.

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