Jan 25, 2011

Jobs? What jobs?!

Many of us have the skills to get a job, but how many of us can create a job?
This is a question that’s been swirling in my head for a few weeks now, and I posed it on Twitter to see what responses I would get.

This best exemplifies the responses received:

“Intriguing question, we definitely need people who can create jobs, especially in Zambia.”

I have been very encouraged over the last year with the number of people I have come into contact with through this site and my other social networks who recognise that development in our respective countries needs to be driven by investments in the private sector. Yes, we need law and policy makers to help make the environment more conducive for business through competitive taxation regimes, reduced import duty on machinery and equipment, etc. But the bottom line is, job creation will not be driven by central government in our economy, they neither have the will nor the means to do it efficiently.

I salute my peers who are moving away from the old script – collecting salaula (used clothes) to send back home for distribution and simply thinking monthly trips to Western Union ends our responsibility to the people back home. Our eyes are opening to the possibilities of becoming business owners, industry leaders employing dozens or more.

2 comments:

This is one subject I think is underrated especially in developing countries. Apart from those outside, those resident in our countries also have to find means of creating jobs, for themselves and others.

I agree with you. There needs to be a fundamental shift in our thinking for this to move forward. As I mentioned I’ve seen it in my some of peers, and that’s a good thing. As more people start to realise that we are of the generation who aren’t guaranteed ANYTHING least of all a job, and that the government can’t and won’t provide everything, we’ll start being job creators. This is why we need tenacious people lobbying our governments, labour departments, and banking systems to make the business climate more hospitable for entrepreneurs. We cannot continue to be consumers only of imported goods with mind boggling unemployment rates as high as 50 percent in some countries.

We also cannot continue to blame brain drain for the stagnation in the job markets. We have plenty of intelligent and well trained people whose brains are atrophying locally because they do not have an outlet for their creativity and skills because we don’t nurture risk taking ventures. And furthermore, all those people roaming the streets with their grade 12 certificates and no jobs or further education prospects – we need to reel them and get them working.

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