The Secrets of Job Seeking Success
Landing your first job can be challenging for any recent graduate however the barriers to employment for people with disability can be far greater than those without.
Northcott’s Liz Hopkins recently spoke to Nabila Laskar who is a graduate of Northcott’s Transition To Work program about how she got her first job and how she’s found the experience so far:
Since leaving Northcott’s Transition To Work service 3 years ago, you’ve had great success in getting jobs. You are working part time with Price Waterhouse Coopers (PwC) in Sydney’s CBD and have recently started a second part time job with Northcott’s Customer Enquiry Team. Is there a secret to your job success?
“I think having the right mindset, having a positive attitude, being confident in what you do really helps. I’ve got a ‘can do’ attitude and I’m willing to give things a go. I dedicated myself to getting a job and applied for as many jobs as possible. Even when I got some negative comments from people about my abilities, I didn’t let their negative attitudes get to me. In fact, I wanted to prove them wrong!
I did volunteering at Northcott and also got some work experience with Westmead Hospital University Clinic and then at Baxter Healthcare – both of those were arranged through Northcott’s Transition To Work program. I learn a lot from each work experience. Even if it’s not paid work, it gets you out of the house – it’s good to have voluntary work on your resume.”
What have been the highlights since starting work?
“There have been many! – I’m mostly much more confident – particularly around catching trains. I was really nervous about catching trains before. Now I catch the train into the city and to Parramatta! When you use a wheelchair, you need a guard to get a ramp out every time you get on and off the train. In a really busy work time at PwC, I finished work at 7pm and that is also the same time the guards at my local train station stop work as well – that was a challenging time!!
Coming into the city every time I’m on the train is a thrill – seeing the nice scenery is really exciting.
I love learning about both of my jobs (PwC and Northcott), learning something new each day, and getting to know my team members as well. Basically, I just love work!
When the National Disability Insurance Scheme is fully underway, there will be many businesses considering how to tap into the skills and experiences of people with disabilities. What advice would you give to a business or organisation who wants a new team member who happens to have a disability?
“Organisations would really benefit from having inclusive workplaces – regardless of whether they hire people with disabilities – inclusive workplaces benefit everyone in them. I’ve been working for PwC for almost 12 months now and they’ve been great at supporting me at work. I’m really excited about us moving to the new PwC building in Barangaroo – it will have accessible facilities for me to use and for anyone else who needs them!
If businesses want advice on how to support people with disabilities fit into their workplace, they can give Northcott a call! I think Northcott’s Employment Services has a lot of expertise in supporting people with disabilities to get jobs.”
In 5 years time what job would you like and what organisation would you like to work for?
“I’d love to be permanently employed by both Northcott and PwC. Maybe working in different teams – so I can get wider experience.”