Young and Connected is an organization whose aim to allow young professionals from different walks of life and careers to meet and network, allowing them to learn more about their own industry and to be exposed to new ways to learn.
I attended the Corporates and Ladders event in Elephant and Castle, London which was held in collaboration with ‘Somewhere to’ who help people aged 16-25 find a space for projects, exhibits or campaigns. I first met Winnie Oudemans from Young and Connected who told me about the organization and what to expect in the event.
After everyone had arrived and were welcomed, we were encouraged to network with each other. To do this we were tasked to move around the room and meet someone who we have not met before, after we got to know them, we were then asked to introduce this person to rest of the group. I met Olly Longworth from Teach First who told me about the work that he does in eduction and improving the prospects of disenfranchised students as he believes that on child’s educational success is limited by their background.
After several rounds of networking and helping myself to the free food, we moved on the evenings speakers, up first was Annabelle Morris and Bryony Rowbottom from Freshminds recruitment who told us that their work involves helping young graduates find work with the skills that they have.
We were also given tips about CV’s which included how they sells ourselves to an employer, how we should pay attention to detail and be credible. We should also show how we completely owned our previous roles.
They then moved on to the actual interview and talked about how appearance varies from sector to sector, for example those in a creative environment may dress slightly more casual then those in who work in banking. We should also remember that an interview is a two way conversation and to pull out STAR when we need it, this is Situation Task Action and Result.
Our online presence is important, we were told how recruiters would search the Internet and have been know to refuse to hire someone what they found. We were also told how we should use social networking sites like Twitter and LinkedIn to our advantage and should Google ourselves and be aware of what others can find.
After a quick break, the floor was passed to Olly Longworth who introduced himself as one the recruiters for Teach First, and then showed us a video about the work that Teach First does and the link between low family income and and poor educational attendance.
We were then told how only 7% of the population attended an independent school. Yet 75% of judges, 70% of finance directors and 40% of top civil servants attended an independent school.
The aim of Teach First is to provide an alternative route into teaching with a two year course that gives intense training in the classroom which leads to masters.
The surprising thing about this event is that is took place in an empty shop unit which was provided by ‘Somewhere To.’ It seems to make a very effective point, you just need a space and you can do whatever you want.