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Work Mode with Brown Uzoukwu: Much Ado About Federal Jobs



dreamstime_l_33085033Guy: mummy! Guess what? I have just landed my dream job. I just got an offer letter and was asked to resume on Monday.
Mum: are you serious? Praise God. The lord is good. So where exactly is the place?
Guy: yeah, Bionics Ltd, it is an app development and cyber security company.
Mum: (sighs) which one is Bionics ltd? One-Man business? Anyway, thank God. It is better than staying at home. Let’s be managing that one until God answers our prayer. I heard that the Federal Road Safety Commission is recruiting. Hope you applied?

Quite a number of job seekers can relate with the above conversation. I really don’t know how to describe it, but there is this THING we have about federal jobs which I am quite sure is not borne out of our love for public service.

Some people are willing to do anything just to secure a federal job (public/civil service). People write me and ask me to help them secure a placement at any federal opening and I always tell them I don’t offer recruitment services for the federal or state government. A lot of desperate and unsuspecting job seekers have become prey to a lot of scammers parading as recruitment agents. It beats my imagination how someone will be willing to part with as much as 300,000 to 500,000 Naira in order to secure a federal job? Some of our parents do not even think you have gotten a job unless your place work has Ministry, Commission, Agency attached to its name.
What exactly is it job seekers and federal jobs?
One of my readers called me some time ago to share her testimony with me. In her own words, she said “Mr. Brown, thank God for me o. I just got a federal job. You know what that means? I am going to have a job for the next 32 years of my life.”

That brings me to my first thought about federal jobs. Top most on the list of reasons people gravitate towards government jobs is what they describe as guaranteed job security. But I think it is more about the security and not the job. If not, explain to me how an individual who was clamoring for a job in Central Bank of Nigeria, will suddenly turn to Federal Road Safety commission if the CBN pursuit does not work out. The next time you meet the person, he has suddenly decided to become a prison warder or an INEC staff. When it comes to a federal job, people don’t seem to have any career choice. The deciding factor is the supposed security that comes with the job irrespective of which ministry, parastatal or agency it is.

I do not really blame them. In a country where people are on a pay roll for practically doing nothing, what do you expect? People naturally do not like to be accountable. Nobody wants to assume responsibility. That is why people will pay anything to work in a place where their pay cheque or security is not determined by their level of productivity. But is it really worth dying for?
I mean, who said that people don’t have job security in the private sector. It all depends on what your definition of job security is. There are persons who can never be without jobs because they have learnt how to produce results. That is what the private sector is all about. Results.

This is what most young career persons are scared off and that is why you see over half a million people go for the immigration jamboree that led to loss of lives.
Secondly, I also have the notion that our school system contributes to this insatiable appetite of job seekers for federal jobs. Most of the students are not really prepared to take up challenges in the society and create opportunities and solutions. Majority are wired for the government job kind of thing. There is no mindset of production or value optimization. It is just about salary, salary and nothing but salary. This remains the reason why our public sector is not thriving as it should.
Sometimes when I visit some public offices and see the quality of their human resources, I wonder how some people managed to get the job in the first place.
I don’t have any problem with the federal jobs or the public sector, neither am I against anyone seeking to work for the government. However, I don’t see any reason for the obsession. People are practically obsessed with these government jobs.
It is very evident in the way we mount pressure on the government to create more jobs. How much jobs are we really expecting the government to create. How many of us can they employ? Are we expecting them to do that by creating more ministries or agencies that does relatively nothing but have salaries allocated to them in the budget. I don’t understand. Unemployment level will always remain high whenever people are looking on the side of the government for jobs. Even In developed countries that has a well functional and efficient public service, the private sector is still the highest employer of labour.

Jobs are created by the private sector. What good governments do is to produce enabling environment for the private sector to thrive. A job is a job anywhere. If we have job seekers that think more of contribution and less of consumption, the pressure we mount on the federal jobs will drastically reduce and alternatively, we can be able to identify more opportunities and get ourselves to be productive.

True security does not come from someone else, it comes from within. Some people will always feel and become insecure no matter the hedge you construct around them. Like I said, there are some people that are not scared of losing their jobs today because they know that they will get another one.
The best form of job security is derived from giving yourself to becoming a solution provider, a problem solver, a change agent and a firm believer of execution.
Young career persons should not be scared of the private sector. It is a rewarding sector that rewards your excellence and hard work irrespective of your age or federal character. In the private sector, promotion is not based on length of service. It is the quality of your service and the results you generate that gets you climbing the corporate ladder at your own pace.
The private sector is challenging, it is fun, it is engaging and it is rewarding. There is space for you to achieve your dreams no matter how big they are. Prepare yourself to work. Develop expertise and experience. Build an excellence culture and the security of your job will be the least of your worries.

Have a great day.

Photo Credit: Dreamstime

Brown Uzoukwu Educates and Inspires Young Professionals to Pursue their Dream Careers and Thrive in a Challenging and Positive Work Environment. He Provides Training and Coaching solutions for Schools, Small and Medium Organizations, Youth Forums and Individual Professionals. E-mail: [email protected] Phone: +234 (0)813 3514 781


  1. akama

    July 4, 2016 at 11:34 am

    Nice article! ‘There is no mindset of production or value optimization’ I totally agree that we have this problem

  2. Tlop

    July 4, 2016 at 11:40 am

    Hi, I am a Tailor /an upcoming fashion designer, who loves everything about creativity /craft, With so much passion for it, but i’m at the point in my career where I feel I need some mentoring /good experience to more effectively develop my management skills so that I can possibly move into a directorship role. So my request is this: I need a reputable cloths making house that could employ me, or a good link, God bless. Whatsapp contact: 08032730106/ Lagos,Nigeria. #ILoveBellaNaija #MakeNaijaAbetterPlace #SomeonePlsBringHopeToLive

  3. bibieki

    July 4, 2016 at 12:02 pm

    Young minds should have goals and vision for themselves.
    we should create our securities; we should further build ourselves to update our resume irrespective of where we are.
    One of my motto is: be prepared so that when opportunities comes you will be lucky

  4. Stacey

    July 4, 2016 at 12:18 pm

    Totally unrelated but here goes. So I have this over-critical trait. I criticize with the intention of wanting the person am addressing to be a better person. It has affected my friendship with my female friends because of how emotional we females can get when it comes to accepting the truth. How do i tone it down, pass my message and not hurt people’s feelings? It makes me feel bad how people think am just a bitter person. So much for someone struggling with self esteem. Sigh.

    • Bodunade

      July 4, 2016 at 1:02 pm

      Someone can relate to this.
      Criticising everything will be perceived as bitterness. I definitely don’t want to be around someone that sees faults and complains every single time.
      You have to tell yourself that nobody is perfect. Even you trying to correct stuff , you have flaws too.
      Approach is important too, it’s not about what you say, it’s how you say it. With ‘bitterness’ or with ‘love’.
      Learn to correct only if necessary and always use kind words,it works.

    • xxxx

      July 4, 2016 at 1:16 pm

      One way you can do that is to :
      1) Listen:
      Somedays people do not want a better them. They just want someone who would sit by them, listen and say everything is going to be just fine.
      2) Be empathetic: would help you show discernment and truly help your friends, not hack them to pieces.

      3) Do not expect perfection from anyone : Realize u are neither perfect so where and why are you giving constant criticism to the point of being termed bitter to another person to get them to be perfect. Dolls are perfect, mannequins are perfect your friends won’t be and you too. So be realistic in your expectations of them.

      4) Learn to love: love is kind, patient not critical or harsh. When you cultivate love it will show in your dealings with friends and self
      5) Have fun. Live your life. Have a bucket list. Work on it. Go yachting, golfing, fishing. When you have a life you enjoy. It would show.

    • Tosin

      July 7, 2016 at 7:37 pm

      Sometimes I’ll announce to the person/people that I’m very critical, even of myself looool, just as you’ve explained here. They can then have fun abusing/yapping/insulting me for a minute and also learn where I’m coming from and to chill and not take my criticism too hard.

  5. annabel

    July 4, 2016 at 12:19 pm

    Well said ….

  6. debbie

    July 4, 2016 at 12:33 pm

    I totally agree with u, however, there are quite a number of graduates and even illiterate and semi illiterate youths who are willing to do exploits in the private sector. b the problem is the environment is not enabling, there is no easy access to cheap loans, no grants, and so on. Also even if they have the cash, there is no backdrop of men tors to help them in their journey. u see NOW doing humanitarian work, but I am yet to see many in the mentorship sector. The ones I see u pay through ur nose. Western countries have in abundance so much so that the mentorship u get is enough for u to build a business on which will eventually generate enough funds for u to go for the ones u pay for. business people should consider this as a CSR too, it is a way to give back to the society. not just handing out cars and cash to people based singing talents or beautiful faces. how many people can be a musician or beauty queen, but the place of private business is opened to all who are interested and has tremendous opportunities for employment of labour.

  7. Chu

    July 4, 2016 at 1:37 pm

    This is so true, my mum still wants me to get a govt job as that is ‘more secure’, though she is slowly changing her mindset now.

  8. Me

    July 4, 2016 at 1:42 pm

    Government job over private abeg… Those private companies are users and bloody exploiters. I was working for one in Abuja, Nigeria, you resume at 8 and close by 5:30pm, what the heck kind of suffer head is that, with their peanut salary. A standard job is 9-5 everywhere in the world. Talk more of a country where it takes you about 2 hours to get to work… UTTER nonsense, abeg government job for them man them.

    • Niyoola

      July 4, 2016 at 2:41 pm

      wait ….. you are complaining about an 8 – 5:30 job????
      *tears* Just say you want to go and lay about (and maybe chop money in the process).
      you want to resume at 10 and close at 3 abi? hian!

  9. Chic

    July 4, 2016 at 2:56 pm

    The problem is some people are just lazy, want to eat but don’t want to work. I love the private sector because it challenges you. Any job that I don’t see myself learning or growing, I take a walk from. I really don’t know how people get so comfortable sitting in the office all day doing nothing. Except you have an active business going on for you on the side,. i.e you can concentrate on your personal business ventures. Anyways, to each his own.

  10. Ranyinudo

    July 4, 2016 at 3:39 pm

    Biko I’m still looking for federal govt job like kilode. Mbok if u have any or ur got contact….link me up pls.

  11. nunulicious

    July 4, 2016 at 9:41 pm

    Federal jobs will offer you regular promotion, a guaranteed pension, relatively decent work hours, access to mortgages, ability to do a side hustle, access to loans and a shot at a political appointment. Furthermore, if you have the mindset to work and good work ethics you shine like a star to your boss and superiors in the midst of the mediocrity. So whats not to like about a government job?

    You probably view private sector jobs based on your exposure in Lagos, Port-Harcourt, a few other commercial hubs across the country or ‘the abroad’, The private companies that offer what government jobs do are VERY few and far between COMPARED to the NUMBER of people that require employment.
    Nigeria is a country made of towns and villages. There are perhaps less than five cities in the entire nation. MOST people just want to have a livelihood and could care less about Maslow or Herzberg theory of motivation. Next time, try and write based on a birds eye view as opposed to a skewed viewing lens.

  12. Osinachi

    July 6, 2016 at 8:52 am

    Great one bro. Thanks for sharing this

  13. Tosin

    July 7, 2016 at 7:39 pm

    I see your great points, Writer Brown. I also see the point of seeking this form of security. Can’t blame people who are “tired”

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