Inquisitive Interviews : Simmy Mathew – Auditor

Hi all we are back this week again with Inquisitive Interviews, yes it’s not been on for a couple of weeks, and I am to blame completely. However, this week we are back with something inquisitive for you guys to look at. The profile that we will cover today is that of an Auditor. Yes Auditors, the very same people that can give a shiver to many. If at all you wondered what they do and why people seem to be scared of them, well here are probably some answers.

For the uninitiated, Inquisitive Interviews, the feature was born out of the requests by some of the students who read this blog, requesting information regarding careers. And with a view to help them make a better choice, I have started to feature various careers from different people, starting with people I know and hoping to slowly reach many different people. The Inquisitive Interviews feature would not only help the students reading the interview but also the interviewees providing them with some Online PR of sorts, the benefits of which I mentioned in another post earlier.

 

[Q] Tell Us something about yourself (Things like Name, how many years you have been working and anything else you would like to add.)

 I am known as ‘Simmy Mathew’.

Lived in Dubai for the last 14 years and counting….

Work has been part of my life since the last 7 years.

[Q] What do you Do for a living and Where?

I work as an auditor for Ernst and Young, Dubai

[Q] Is the job what you had expected it to be?

Yes, and maybe a little more…I always wanted to be an auditor and I still remember when I was 16, telling my aunt that I wanted to be an auditor and work in the Big4.So, yes! I am living my dream! 😀

[Q] Is the salary what you had expected it to be?

Yes, I started off at the junior level and it was what I expected.

[Q] What is your average day like?

Well, being an auditor means you are never in office but at the clients – auditing their books.  So an average day is working in a team and trying to achieve deadlines. It varies – depending on the industry you are working in, the size of the entity you are auditing…They are times that I am at a client for months and they are times I am at the client for one-two weeks…. and no two days are the same.

 I work with different sets of people , which is a challenge in itself .

[Q] What’s the most interesting part of your job?

The exposure that I get is high and the learning curve is great. ..But I think the most interesting part of the job is multitasking – applying what you learned in different types of industry and getting your work done, supervising your junior staff work, being proactive and planning ahead.

[Q] What’s the most challenging part of your job?

People ….i guess in a country like UAE – you meet different types of people  – different upbringing, different cultures, different nationalities….so working with them…can be a challenge but I love challenges and embrace  them with open arms.

[Q] What’s the part of the job that you don’t like?

Actually nothing……Sometimes it can get monotonous hence maintaining a right mix of work is important.

[Q] Do you get bored at your workplace at all?

I have to say I don’t have time to get bored……so the answer to that would be no!

[Q] Do you report to someone? How much of an impact the person you report to has on your job?

Yes, I do but that varies…it could be a senior/asst manager/ manager.  Basically they are there to review your work and sort out any issues you have while auditing .

[Q] Do you use all the skills that you learnt in school / college? or where did you pick up the skills ?

well, I have to say what I studied in college as my degree was a bachelors in accounting and Finance definitely helped….Also. ACCA had been an added plus point on the growth path.

 Also, at Ernst & young, if you join as a graduate – they have the graduate development program which ensures you are up-to-date with the Ernst & Young methodology and the latest developments in the accounting world. So there are enough training to develop your career at Ernst & Young.

[Q] What are your Alumni? Where did you study?

School              : Our Own English High School, Dubai

University         : Middlesex University, Dubai campus

Currently pursuing my ACCA

[Q] Would you advice younger people to join in your industry?

Yes, I would. But it requires a little effort and being able to manage a lot of work in time pressure situations.

[Q] What advice would you give to someone trying to get into the industry?

Plan ahead. I f you are an university student and want to try a career, decide where you want to get in and plan how you are going to go about it. Have a roadmap to where  you want to go …and that will help you plan your direction.

[Q] Anything else you want to tell the readers?

Love what you do…no matter what industry you are …then work is all fun…otherwise all work and no play will definitely make Jack a dull boy! 😀

[Q] Any online resources you recommend for people taking up this profession?

ACCA website : http://www.accaglobal.com/ 

IAS plus : http://www.iasplus.com/

You can get in touch with Simmy on Facebook at here profile here: http://www.facebook.com/simmy.mathew

If at all you wondered what Auditors do, I hope this would have given you a better idea. Thank you Simmy for an insight into the world of the Auditors, hope you guys the readers are more aware of the work of Auditors. Until next time, Be Inquisitive.

Inquisitive Interviews : Sangeeta Khiara – Freelance Photographer

Another Sunday, calls for another Inquisitive Interview. And you will love the interview this week, Sangeeta Khiara is really someone who should provide some sort of inspiration for all the women, being a freelancer in a predominantly Male dominated field which is just warming up to women, takes a lot of courage and hard work. I am sure most people with SLR’s these days think of themselves as some sort of professional photographers. But after reading this interview you guys will know it’s a lot more than just that.

Inquisitive Interviews, the feature was born out of the requests by some of the students who read this blog, requesting information regarding careers. And with a view to help them make a better choice, I have started to feature various careers from different people, starting with people I know and hoping to slowly reach many different people. The Inquisitive Interviews feature would not only help the students reading the interview but also the interviewees providing them with some Online PR of sorts, the benefits of which I mentioned in another post earlier.

[Q] Tell us something about yourself- where you live, work, your interests…?

I am a complete Dubai product, born and raised here. Originally from Mumbai, India but Dubai is first home to me. My Father used to be a photographer and spending so much time with him gave me the basic instincts to this field.
Since the past 2 years I have been functioning as a freelance photographer and this has been quite a long term dream to me. I think my interests have varied ever since I was young, I have always wanted to do everything quite possible. I do love music, dance, reading, adventure sports and most entertaining factors that come with life.

[Q] Is the job what you expected it to be ? And is the compensation good enough ?My job is like a new journey everyday, I meet different people some are difficult some are very easy going. When you work in a creative business one needs to come up with a lot of ideas and concepts that dont just come easily to you. Its not like a functional job where things have to go one particular way. 

As for compensation, No human is usually satisfied with their income. Compensations vary from clients/jobs as there is no fixed timing of work so no fixed incomes too. There are months when you are filled up with work and there are times when there is no work at all.

[Q] What is your average day like at work? If possible a recent project or work that excited you enough as part of your job?

Everyday is a new day at work. New work place, new people and concepts. I usually have my R&D done about my upcoming project a day or two earlier and discussed them with my client so I don’t have any issues post shoots. So on the D day its just pack the equipments required and reach the location. Do some basic discussions with the client about how we want the day to be planned, talk to the model (if a model related shoot) or have a good look at the products/area that has to be shot. Once all set I am just clicking away to glory. I enjoy keeping a light atmosphere at the shoot so that the everybody is relaxed and spontaneous.

[Q] Is this job what you had pictured to be? If yes, then how long did you take to get here?

I did picture this job very easy going when I was initially stepping into it but as time passed its been getting tougher. People think just because you are a photographer you just meet cool people and do some point and shoot and that’s it you get paid for making people look good. It takes a lot of hard work and knowledge to get into any profession, and photography also has its creative and technical aspects which make work so much more detailed than ever before.

I did take 2 years to get here, within where I was working at a branding company and would save the cost of a photographer and do it myself for the clients, then I trained, assisted, and now a few people know me by my name and work. Still a long way to get where I want to.

[Q] What’s the most interesting part of your job? Do you get bored at your workplace?

I love networking, I think people make you what you are and its very important to keep a network and communicate. We are lucky to reside in a multi-cultural region like Dubai where we get to meet people from all ends. My job has a new flavor to it everyday which makes it exciting. I dont think I could do an 8-5 job where I have to perform the same task everyday. Its never boring if you got new challenges everyday at various places with varied people.

[Q] What’s the most challenging part of your job?

Expectations are challenging. Clients believe that you would make them or their project look outstanding. Fashion has reached to such a height that regular people are portrayed flawless and when your client expects you to make them look like a different person it becomes a difficult job. I love capturing people but in their own skin and not make them look like they never do, but this is what most people don’t want. Its same in terms of products or events, but that is acceptable because those subjects have a selling point attached to them.

[Q] Do you report to someone? How much of an impact the person you report to has on your job?

I am self employed and work as a freelancer. Thus I dont report to anyone.

[Q] Whats your Alumni ? Where have you studied ?

School : The Indian High School, Dubai
Pre University :
Bachelors Degree: B.A. Media and Communication specializing in Advertising and PR
Masters Degree :

[Q] Do you use skills that you learnt in school /college? Did you take up any specific training or courses?

I did have basic training in photography,video as well as post production as my course involved me to have them. Post university I worked for a bit and joined many workshops and courses available in Dubai to get more professional training. Unfortunately in Dubai there is no academy offering a full- fledged degree in photography specifically. So, I had to take up varied courses at different institutes to complete my training. I have done courses in Digital photography, Studio photography, Portrait photography and fashion photography. I would love to keep learning but I am out of any more courses available in Dubai.

[Q] Would you advice younger people to join in your industry? Meaning what are the limitations/ drawbacks of the industry?

Well when you’re young you are very vulnerable and tend to get into many decisions without knowing the drawbacks about them. I wont advice someone to take up photography in general as its ones own choice but creativity has no end and the world needs more people with fresh minds. Take time to realize what is it that you could do everyday of your life and never get frustrated of. (No that dosent include playing PSP or surfing on you tube) Once you have sorted out your inner behavior, you would know when reality is far more better than just dreaming.

Limitations and Drawbacks come with everything that you do. Life was never a cake walk. Photography as a profession has its limitations where you have to work for your client and how they want it, dosent matter if you like the images. They like it they pay you. That’s the commercial side of it. People are going to question your talent, one just needs to be patient and constantly improve on oneself.

[Q] What advice would you give to someone trying to get into the industry? And what do they need to watch out for ?

First thing first walk in and out with your camera everywhere when you’re starting off. That will make people know where your passion lies. Make sure all your family and friends are aware of what you want to do as they come the most in handy while getting one of your first assignments. Use the web to show people your work, Facebook works more than a personal website these days. Those are just formalities. Keep updating your images and yourself this will make people realize that you want to work.

Watch out for agencies that want to hire new photographers and artists and then grab 60% of your earnings off on every job and yearly fee to be associated with them because they provide you with jobs.

[Q] Anything else you want to tell the readers?

Being a photographer you get many questions raised at you asking what sort of profession is that and is it really going to make you earn anything at all. Because I am a female, these questions are raised at double impact to me. I have always told everyone to follow their best quality and use it in their profession. Parents need to let their children realize their quality, job satisfaction is more important than monetary satisfaction in the long run.

[Q] Any online resources you recommend for people taking up this profession? In terms of General reading as well as Job Searches?

For some basic knowledge and amazing examples visit
http://www.thephotoargus.com/

For regular tips and updates you can visit
http://www.shariblog.com/

As I said networking is very important whether is personally or on the internet. Social networking websites like LinkedIn provide many job opportunities and UAE based Dubbizle also has a vast network.

Anywhere else the readers can get in touch with you ? LinkedIN ? Twitter ? Google + ? Personal Website ?
Facebook Page : http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sangeeta-Khiara-Photography/
Twitter@sanguB
LinkedINSangeeta Khiara

A big thanks to Sangeeta for a really inquisitive interview, a lot more of an insight into being a freelance photographer in Dubai. More importantly, a budding young photographer. Wishing her all the best in the coming weeks ahead and moving on, Be Inquisitive.

Inquisitive Interviews : Priya Sethumadhavan – Physiotherapist (Freelance)

To all the folks following Inquisitive Interviews, apologies for the missed post last week. I just got back from my vacation and had a tough time getting the post additionally I have not really been scouting for new interviews. Anyway this week I present somewhat of an interesting profile of Priya, a good friend again but someone who is working as a freelance physiotherapist. Interested to learn more ? Read on.

Inquisitive Interviews, the feature was born out of the requests by some of the students who read this blog, requesting information regarding careers. And with a view to help them make a better choice, I have started to feature various careers from different people, starting with people I know and hoping to slowly reach many different people. The Inquisitive Interviews feature would not only help the students reading the interview but also the interviewees providing them with some Online PR of sorts, the benefits of which I mentioned in another post earlier.

[ Q ] Tell us something about yourself ?

Hi I’m Priya,Indian in every aspect but born and brought in Dubai, I love yapping so thank you Melvin to giving me the opportunity to yap on his blog:) I hope through this interview i would be able to give a clear insight to what physiotherapy is all about.

[ Q ] What do you Do for a living and Where ?

I’m a Physiotherapist, freelancing handling children with special needs.

[ Q ] Is your job what you expected it to be ?

I was a person who always wanted to do everything in a different way.Having taken science in 11th and 12th, I had people branding me as the next doctor and engineer or even dentist, but i wanted to do something different.While I was studying my grandma had a hip fracture and my home town being a small one she had to travel 80 kms to the closest city to get her treatment done, but she would never miss it cause the relief she felt was very nice,so that inspired me why not study physiotherapy and then be of use to people, cause pain is to be gotten rid of and not sustained.Finished college and like all fresh graduates expecting a job to be on a platter,but soon realized your either not qualified enough to get into big hospitals and the rules in this part of the world is very strict when it comes to the medical field.A couple months of frustration down the line I got an opportunity to work for special needs school, I was heart-broken when i got through the interview,coz it definitely wasnt my field of choice. Initially I dint enjoy it, but then my attachment with special needs kids grew and I learnt to appreciate so many trivial things in life thanks to all these kids that today I would proudly say im doing my dream job

[ Q ] Is your salary what you expected it to be ?

I doubt if there would be anyone who would be completely satisfied with their salary and not seek for more :) When I worked in the special needs center the salary was literally peanuts,but ever since I have started freelancing I think I make enough to suffice my needs for daily living.

[ Q ] What is your average day like ?

my average day starts with worshipping God followed by my stomach, then the start of my sessions.The schedules of my sessions are subject to change since I deal with kids.I usually drive about 200 kms in a day going from one point to the other,but since the destination is what I look forward to the drive is enjoyable and the day ends with an awesome time with my friends either having chai or playing badminton!

[ Q ] What’s the most interesting part of your job ?

My kiddies, its amazing to hear their talks its amazing the see how a teeny weeny progress in them gives immense joy to the parents and sense of achievement to oneself. my job teaches me to find joy in the silliest of things and feel blessed everyday.

[ Q ] What’s the most challenging part of your job ?

Handling the emotions, of the parents, the kids i see and myself when u get stuck with the progress and then don’t know what you should be doing next.Emotions need not be the sentimental stuff,even sometimes you need to control your anger when your handling paranoid parents.

[ Q ] What’s the part of the job that you don’t like ?

When the kids take a break from therapy, it could be due to illness, school exams,functions, a break of just 1 weeke is more than enough for them to regress back, so then it irritates.

[ Q ] Do you get bored at your workplace at all ?

NEVER, I have lots of workplaces:) i go to the child’s house and offer therapy in the home surroundings, so in a day i kind of visit 5-6 houses :)

[ Q ] Do you report to someone ? How much of an impact the person you report to has on your job ?

I report to the kids I treat, they are my boss. They have a huge impact on the job, coz if they decide not to cooperate there is nothing much I can do.

[ Q ] Do you use all the skills that you learnt in school / college ? or where did you pick up the skills ?

Physiotherapy treatments for children with special needs evolves everyday. We need to be as creative as possible to achieve our targets.

[ Q ] What’s your Alumni ? Where have you studied ?

Schooling                     : Grammar school Dubai, Our Own English high School,Dubai

Pre University               : Our own English high School,Dubai

Bachelor’s Degree        : Laxmi Memorial College of Physiotherapy,Mangalore

 

[ Q ] Would you advice younger people to join in your industry ?

definitely, you may or may not make much money, but you definitely will feel nice about yourself when you turn out to be a vital part of society.

[ Q ] What advice would you give to someone trying to get into the industry ?

Work hard, have a lot of patience, nothing is easy in this world. But your hard work and sincerity will definitely pay off and the satisfaction achieved is here to stay!

[ Q ] Anything else you want to tell the readers ?

Enjoy life, always take up a career only what you enjoy doing not what you have been forced upon! Once in your lifetime spend a day with a special needs and feel how blessed you are!

[ Q ] Any online resources you recommend for people taking up this profession ?

http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Physiotherapy/Pages/Introduction.aspx

http://www.physioguru.com/

You can get in touch with Priya at the link below :

On Facebook : Priya Sethumadhavan

I would like to thank Priya for some very good advice and some interesting insight into being a freelance Physiotherapist. For the time being this is Priya and Me signing off, and as always Be Inquisitive.

Inquisitive Interview : Sagar Sen – Scientist / Faculty

Its again that time of the week when I feature an Inquisitive Interview on the blog, and this week its someone that I have knows for close to 10 years now. A college friend who is now a faculty / scientist in France. Yes I know it is still an engineering field like the one for the Marketing Engineer, but as you will see in the series there are many things that an engineer ends up working on, varied and vast in its approach. If you want to keep track of the interviews only please look at his page: http://blog.melvinpereira.com/inquisitive-interviews/

Inquisitive Interviews, the feature was born out of the requests by some of the students who read this blog, requesting information regarding careers. And with a view to help them make a better choice, I have started to feature various careers from different people, starting with people I know and hoping to slowly reach many different people. The Inquisitive Interviews feature would not only help the students reading the interview but also the interviewee providing them with some online PR of sorts, the benefits of which I mentioned in another post earlier.

[ Q ] Tell us something about yourself ?

I am Sagar Sen, 28 years old. I am Computer Scientist at INRIA Sophia-Antipolis, France which is close to the beautiful city of Nice in Cote d’Azur. My  career goal is to find a perfect balance between  top-level research in computer science (more info here http://web.me.com/sagarsen) and high-performance sports notably rowing. Finding my mental and physical limits and stretching them everyday is what drives me.

Don’t be frightened! I also enjoy a lot of other activities. I have an inclination to be spiritual with a regular practice of Yoga. I love making friends and turning them into good , and eventually great friends pretty quickly. I have tried my hand at every sport I could including the traditional soccer/cricket ,ping-pong, fin swimming, rock climbing, roller blades, etc. etc. but I stay Fidel to rowing. I not very patient with art in this fast-paced world but I have extrapolated my prior interest in painting to learning to play the piano. This helps me appreciate ambiguity and uncertainty.  I adore family values and have great respect for my parents, family, and my teachers in life.

[ Q ] What do you Do for a living and Where ?

I am Computer Scientist working at Sophia-Antipolos, France

[ Q ] Is your salary what you expected it to be ?

Yes. The salary is just right to strike a sweet balance between work and life.

[ Q ] What is your average day like ?

I wake up anywhere between 6 am and 7 am. Depending on my training schedule I either go to the rowing club to row for about 12-15 kms, or cycle down to work from Nice to Sophia-Antipolis (22 km), or do a 1 hour session of Ashtanga Yoga. I am at work at around 10 am at INRIA Sophia-Antipolis. I spend a lot of time discussing with students and engineers on our collaborative projects. We make collective decisions about what to do such as for software projects or performing experiments. I spend a lot of time writing research articles and send them for publication in conferences, journals or magazines. I come back home by 7 pm. I spend some time playing the piano, chatting with roomates or go through a second session of training: rowing, circuit training, running/roller-blading,  or power yoga. At night, on some occasions I go out to meet friends for a drink or a stroll by the sea thinking and clarifying my thoughts. I often have a deep sleep.

[ Q ] What’s the most interesting part of your job ?

The most interesting part in my job is the interaction with my colleagues and synthesis of ideas from start to finish. A byproduct of this process is witnessing the maturation of a young student into a full-fledged researcher ready to better understand the world and bring order out of chaos.

[ Q ] What’s the most challenging part of your job ?

The most challenging part of the job is to keep students motivated, focused, and constantly keep a positive atmosphere in the work environment.

[ Q ] What’s the part of the job that you don’t like ?

There are only a few things. Improving communication on some occasions can always be a good thing.

[ Q ] Do you get bored at your workplace at all ?

Sometimes. However, in research your workplace is everywhere, the kitchen, outside, or on the sea. Most work is mental which is realized quickly when clarity is achieved and decisions are made.

[ Q ] Do you report to someone ? How much of an impact the person you report to has on your job ?

Yes. At times I report to a senior member in the research team about the ongoing work. However, my workplace is more or less flat. If you are motivated then you can collaboratively make your idea happen without much intervention due to hierarchy.

[ Q ] Do you use all the skills that you learnt in school / college ? or where did you pick up the skills ?

Yes. I am glad I learnt a multitude of skills in school. At first I was apprehensive about the different text books I used to read and experiments we conducted in school/college. But today those pieces of information come back to me in new light that helps me integrate ideas to solve real problems.

[ Q ] What’s your Alumni ? Where have you studied ?

Schooling                     : Kendriya Vidyalaya Indian Institute of Science

Pre University               : Kendriya Vidyalaya Indian Institute of Science

Bachelor’s Degree        : Bangalore University

Master’s Degree           :  McGill University, Canada

[ Q ] Would you advice younger people to join in your industry ?

Yes. Of course. I am living a great life and creating value. Why not you? Feel free to contact me.

[ Q ] What advice would you give to someone trying to get into the industry ?

I would suggest reading, thinking, and identifying exactly what direction you want to head to in the next 3-4 years. You should be happy with your decision as research involves dedication to a problem or related problems for a few years.

[ Q ] Anything else you want to tell the readers ?

Give equal importance to all aspects of personal development. Try to create equal opportunity for others when you are in the right position in future.

[ Q ] Any online resources you recommend for people taking up this profession ?

 

You can get in touch with Sagar at the links below :

On Facebook    : http://www.facebook.com/#!/sagarsen
On Linked In    : http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=114232733

Thanks Sagar, for all your help and support, I am sure the readers like me would learn something new with this interview. Am sure the most intelligent among us readers would be keen to contact you for some guidance.

Inquisitive Interviews : Jason Prince – Marketing Engineer

As mentioned in a post earlier about Inquisitive Interviews, this blog is attempting to provide some real helpful information to students and professionals alike. Once a week this blog will feature an Inquisitive Interview of a professional from daily life, from really varied professional backgrounds. No part of this interview has been edited or modified in any way.

I kick start this series with one of the best Marketing guys that I personally know, being part of the events initiative we started, Jason has been an important person within Inquisitive Events. I would request you to add in your best wishes and comments for Jason below.

[ Q ] Tell us something about yourself ?

Name is Prince. Jason Prince.

Born and raised in Dubai, went to Canada, came back with a degree in electrical engineering, got a job 3 months later. Started my MBA program parallely with work.  Been in construction industry for 7 years now & loving it.

[ Q ] What do you Do for a living and Where ?

At the moment, I am a Marketing Manager for a company called InoSafe Lighting Solutions based in Dubai.

[ Q ] Is the job what you had pictured it to be ?

It is my 3rd job in 7 years and it is closest to the picture I had in mind!

[ Q ] Is your salary what you expected it to be ?

It was. But i was surprised to know that there are many other industries that pay much better, for example, media industry.

[ Q ] What is your average day like ?

That is the best part of being a Marketing Engineer, every day is different. If there is a huge project, like an airport; we take a week to design it as perfect as possible, 3 days to make a good presentation out of it and another 3 days to present it the client. If it is a smaller project, one day is good for each one of these activities.

On off peak times like summer holidays and Ramadan, mornings are usually set for meetings and after lunch for paperwork.

[ Q ] What’s the most interesting part of your job ?

Meeting people. Usually, the relationship that forms is lifelong and it is interesting to see how each relationships takes form.

[ Q ] What’s the most challenging part of your job ?

Deadlines usually. Sometimes, these deadlines can get impractical. And the frustrating part of it is that the deadlines becomes tight when someone along the “work-chain” didn’t complete their work on time.

[ Q ] What’s the part of the job that you don’t like ?

Sometimes, the people who take decisions take advantage of their position. Dealing with these people are never fun or challenging.

[ Q ] Do you get bored at your workplace at all ?

Sometimes. But that is good. It gives a chance to change things. Every company appreciates a positive change. If you can suggest it to improve the company’s turnover and your role in the company, grab it.

[ Q ] Do you report to someone ? How much of an impact the person you report to has on your job ?

Yes, I do report to my manager. And the manager can have a huge impact on the work that you do. As a fresher, I believe it doesn’t really matter who your boss is. If he has good qualities, adopt it. If he has bad qualities, add it to the list of things-not-to-do-if-I-ever-become-a-boss. It is all part of learning.

If you are going to look for a job at senior level, then it is important to check the chemistry you have with your manager because firstly, you tend to get a lot crankier by now & it is hard to gel with anybody like before & secondly, he could really have an effect on your growth up the ladder.

[ Q ] What would you say are the growth aspects in this Industry are like ?

Initial growth is slow. But once you gain like 10 years of experience, you are king! You can command whatever you want with respect! But of course, it is hard to generalize. It differs from industry to industry.

[ Q ] Do you use all the skills that you learnt in school / college ? or where did you pick up the skills ?

70-80% of the skills are the ones you picked up at the job itself. But the remaining 30% is crucial too. The person and the habits that you have picked up reflects on your work. For example, there are some people always looking for shortcuts. This stems up from the fact that they were always looking for shortcuts while studying. While there are others who were always looking for the whys and how’s and they have more research type attitude. Mind you, they are both good and required. You just have to pick a job profile that best fits.

[ Q ] What’s your Alumni ? Where have you studied ?

Schooling                     : Our Own English High School, Dubai

Pre University               : Tandem Institute of Engineering, India

Bachelor’s Degree        : University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada

Master’s Degree           : University of Southern Queensland, Australia (campus in Dubai)

[ Q ] Would you advice younger people to join in your industry ?

Construction industry is not the best option right now in Dubai right now. You might not get the salary that will best match your expectations. If the company is concentrating on growing third world countries, it could be an exciting opportunity.

[ Q ] What advice would you give to someone trying to get into the industry ?

Like I said, it is not the best time and it might take a while to establish. Patience & luck goes a long way!

[ Q ] Anything else you want to tell the readers ?

Keep a hobby. And actively pursue it as you grow at work. It will help.

[ Q ] Any online resources you recommend for people taking up this profession ?

Nope, you learn everything at work. Some companies invest in personality development programs. Those are great!

You can get in touch with Jason here :

On Facebook    : http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=691991915
On Linked In    : –
On Twitter        : –

Thank you Jason, the readers would really appreciate your insights.

Inquisitive Interviews cos Google is your next Interview

Google has been the cornerstone of the Internet’s expansion for some time now, I know there would be a few readers that would disagree with me on a more technical level, however Google did to the Internet what windows did to the desktop PC. Gave it a shape and a voice. Today we cannot really think of a life without Google. We use the search for everything, even the term Google It is now in the dictionary as a synonym of search. One of the industries that really did well with the explosion of the internet was the Job Search industry, going from newspaper ads locally right to the internet job search sites like Monster.com to now the very popular Linked In. Most people use the common routes of the internet for job search, i.e. search for a job on a job site, send in your CV and wait for a response. However there are more innovative ones among us that are using the Internet resources differently for job search, more on that later. The tried and tested route is great for beginner jobs and for intermediate jobs. However a you grow up the ladder this method starts to fall short. Main because head hunters look for people in higher places, as well as referrals and contacts take over.

Through all of this, one thing is emerging as a major trend in the Job Search / Hunt industry. Google. Most people these days are Googling potential candidates to search for information like credibility, recommendations etc. Linked in is one of the most popular of these sources that shows up, on a close second would be Facebook and Twitter. It would be logical considering that these sites are as big as they are, Linked in with over 100 Million users and Facebook with a staggering 500 million users. Googling a person can bring about the information about a person that he may or may not be particularly proud of. Like that drunk party you were at, or someone blogging about your inefficiency etc.

Based on this it becomes imperative that you really go out there and start Ego Googling once every few months, just to make sure that the information about you is current and relevant and in fact you are Googlable. What do I mean by that ? well for starters make it easier for people to find you on Google, make sure that there is good information about you and not too much dirt. Once this process is done you will see that a person looking for your information might be able to find, that you are indeed an achiever as well as have some evidence to back it up.

The entire process above is called Personal Branding. What it means though is that you are working to promote yourself similarly as a brand would do. I am working on something similar for myself, if you Google Melvin Pereira, you would see that most results are between a namesake and of course me. The namesake is a renowned photographer of Jet Planes and has been quoted over the internet a lot. Which makes him easier to search than for example me. But I have an advantage, this blog. Having a domain name with my name and a blog has ensured that I am searchable, and findable. My thoughts and knowledge base is this blog itself. I know a lot of you are thinking is this really relevant to me ? Well for starters you don’t always need a blog to be findable on Google, you only need to compete with all your name sakes in order to reach the first page and the top results there. Here are some steps that might help in the process :

  1. Google Yourself regularly : What does come of that exercise is you can see how far off from the first page are you. Only when you know how far back you are, can you know how much work is required to put you to the front pages.
  2. Online Participation : Participate in websites where interaction would lead to increased visibility. Read and comment on blogs that are related to your line of work, try to help others out online, e.g. educational forums where college students ask for answers. Etc.
  3. Linked In : Have a great Linked In profile. Filling in all the sections as well as providing as such relevant work related information as possible. Considering that Linked In profile would be one of the first pages that show up for your name, the more information it does have the better the impact it would have.
  4. Repeat Step 1 every few months, or every month initially.

In the process, I will also be able to help. On this blog I am starting a section called Inquisitive Interviews, a series of Interviews that are well, Inquisitive to start off with. I was being asked the question by some college students on if there line of work is correct and what are the growth prospects, although I am not qualified nor experienced enough I thought that by providing them with information related to how people work ? What did they study to get there etc, it might help to make some good decisions regarding their career. Complimenting this, it would also provide some visibility for the person in the interview on Google, as my Blog is now quite frequently visited by Google.

There are many different ways through which you can be famous online, by putting up really stupid pictures of yourself (which might not be the best for your career) also by helping people, and getting recognized for it. For the benefit of a lot of my readers, I hope Inquisitive Interviews will provide some value too, making the interviewee Googlable and help them advance in their career. If you want to get featured in Inquisitive Interviews get in touch with me at me[at]melvinpereira.com. Additionally I would request you to share this section with more students in the hope that it will be helpful to them