Dreams of success do not come to those who wait, but to those who are proactive and take action


Dear Sir,
Question: I am 26 years old & reading for CIMA finals. I have 3 ½ years of experience & recently resigned from job due to two reasons. First is my job was not related to my qualification as I had worked as a merchandiser. But it was easy for my studies that it was situated close to home & I did not seek for another job until I finished CIMA part II. Second is I found difficult to do three subjects together. Hence I am doing full time & planning to work after the May exams. I have a doubt whether I will be able to find a job suited to CIMA qualification as most of employers are looking for 2-3 years of accounting experience.
Can you advise on this?
Worried Subodha
Via Email
Dear Subodha,
Firstly let me wish all of you a happy 2009.

A: Taking a closer look at your current situation, If I were you, I would have discussed the issue with the company first and tried to work out a transfer into a related area within the company, why I say this is that finding a new job will be difficult if at all you may want to go in as a management trainee, which would mean the company sucking out the juice out of you without benefit to you. Furthermore you would need to start at the bottom which would be de motivating since you would be reporting to people who are less qualified, but have the required experience.

I also see a gap in your time line, you say you are 26, does this mean that you did not work before or did you take a longer time to finish the two stages.

I also see a certain degree of opportunism in your decision, where you have used the organization to get your qualification, but not given back something to the company.

As I see it you have the following options:
"You can re negotiate your job with the previous company, where they may want to take you back if you performed ,where you could gain gradual exposure to the finance skill, but this is easier said than done
"You could seek options in a related company in the industry ,however the move would be in to the finance division, where your advantage to the business would be knowledge in the industry as well as the financial skill
"You could also explore working for a reputed consulting/auditing or outsourcing company, where you could get multiple exposure in the areas of focus.
"Or as mentioned above starting off as a management trainee or related accounting position in a multinational
The options mentioned above are based on finding solutions to three issues:

" Your age, where you have already lost time , you need to get in to rocket mode, my advice for you by 30 you need to get into first level management

"Not reinventing the wheel, the markets are turbulent ,trying to get into a new area would be difficult since most companies would be reducing their head count, and would most certainly be looking for experience

"Overcoming the skill gap ASAP, where working for consultancy house/auditing company, outsourced provider or multi national would help you to overcome the problem
As I see it there are three phases of career success;

1.20-30 year phase ,where some make it big during this phase finding their dream job and then die out
2.31-40 year phase ,where some ,example yourself understand that they have made a career mistake and use this learning to get to the next level and move to the top
3.41-47 year phase, I call this the holding on phase , where some discover the true gaps and reinvent and progress or die .
Finally you need ensure that when you are looking for the next exciting career move you remain positive and active where your dreams of success do not come to those who wait, but to those who are proactive and take action.

Stay focused, good things don't come easy
Q: Please let me know where I could follow a recognized advertising Diploma in Sri Lanka .I'm a CIM student
Dear Edna,

A: I see some clutter in your question , for example the CIM would give you sufficient skill to be the best at integrated marketing communications, however if you need a specialized approach you could do the CAM diploma in marketing communications, speak to CIM for accredited institutes offering it. If you need to hands on training you may need to contact the 4A's for affiliated organizations.
Ask yourself a question first, what do you want out of this qualification or what are your career objectives.

Dear sir,
Q: I am a 16 years old student and I have just sat O/L in 2008.I am following a hardware course in Turnkey.I am interested in IT field. Without doing A/L can I follow 8 months IT foundation course to continue my higher studies?. Please advice me necessary way to follow IT course.
Thank you,

Dear Imhadh,
A: This is a classic trap that many students get caught to, where the institution would unethically advice you to skip you're A/L's and move on to a foundation course, but the foundation course would cost you and would need to be toped up as well.

Therefore I suggest first you decide what you want out of this higher study option example you can end up with M.SC/MIT or and MBA, but this is only the qualification this needs to be matched with your career goals in IT.

My advice ,first get your vision board in place without jumping the band wagon, do your research with regard to the available options and finally talk to experts in the industry who made it through this path.
Then make your decision there are positives and negatives in each option you choose.
All the best

Leading Marketer and reputed lecturer M. Failan Saleem answers your queries on career and education guidance every week.All you have to do is to write your question to the point and briefly below 100 words and mail it to:
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