…Full? Part-time? Do YOU want one?
My students always look at me like I’ve grown two heads when I give them my number-one #hawt tip about finding themselves an apprenticeship.
(NOTE, you have to have an employer who wants to put you on as an apprentice or trainee – that is the way it works…)
My number-one #hawt tip goes like this, I say:
"Go forth and 'NAG'!"
Here’s the thing, after many years assisting my students in finding apprenticeships, I have realised that the success of securing an apprenticeship has very little to do with me. It has more to do with the student’s capacity to nag—or at the very least speak up – over and over!
Every teen has the gift to nag (many parents will wearily nod in agreement!) and I encourage my students to adopt the same single-minded strategy (nagging) when seeking an apprenticeship. However, REMEMBER this:
Keep your 'nag' calm, focused and polite!
I will share a secret:
From my experience, most apprenticeships/traineeships are found through doing work experience/s! AND by asking the employer the relevant questions while you are at work. Remember this as you read on!
Your recipe for successful-polite nagging!
Here is who you have to nag, and why:
1. Your school’s Career Teacher or Practitioner:
Nag them about the following (remember they are busy people and may ask you to come back to them, that is why you need to persevere):
- First, and foremost, they need to KNOW what you want (& keep reminding them)!
- A list of possible employers to approach for work experience.
- Advice or recommendations about to who to approach.
- ‘Can you do a pre-call’ to the company for me? (That way you can be certain that the way is paved for easy access).
- Is there a Group Training Organisation who accepts expressions of interest for people seeking apprenticeships? Who are they? How do you contact them?
- Work experience processes (what are they?) and paperwork (to take with you).
- I can’t BEGIN to tell you how many apprenticeships have come from doing working experience with a potential employer…
- oh wait, I have already told you that!
2. Your work experience boss:
- If there is ONE clear thing that your boss needs to know it is this: YOU are seeking an apprenticeship – with them.
- TELL them this…
- Unless you ‘fess up – they won’t know!
- When you know, that they know, here are some questions you could ask:
- Have you put on full-time apprentices before?
- Have you put on school-based apprentices before?
- What time of year do you recruit?
- How many do you recruit?
- What things do you look for in an apprentice?
- What things do you look for in a resume?
- You know I am keen, right?
3. Your resume….
You cannot nag a resume, but you can certainly annoy yourself (and others) to make sure it is ready. For example:
- Do you know under which folder or device your resume is hiding?
- Can you grab your resume at a moment’s notice if an apprenticeship offer crops up?
- Is your resume up to date?
- Have you asked a number of people to proof-read your resume?
4. Everyone else…
Everyone you know, (sometimes called your ‘network‘) needs to know, that you want an apprenticeship. So TELL them, then, REMIND them. You never know what leads will come from nagging the people you know.
I know that my nagging philosophy may not be easy for you and you could be stepping well outside your comfort zone by following my advice. All I can say is this:
...the more you do #polite_nag, the easier it gets.... the more you #polite_nag, the better you become....
And your polite nagging technique, if well honed, will help you throughout your entire working life.