How one graduate literally stood out from the crowd

Published On: 3 Sep 2014

Alfred Ajani sign

Image: Alfred Ajani via Twitter

The job hunt is tough – usually cruelly so. We have all experienced the arduous slog of searching through reams of listings, applying for those select few that suit our experience and waiting with bated breath for a response from those prospective employers.

So how many positions have you applied for without ever hearing a peep back?

It can be so disheartening to pour heart and soul into your CV, cover letter and application form for a job you have carefully selected, only to have it seemingly brushed aside. It’s so easy to give in and resign yourself to a life in retail or customer service instead of the career path you had set for yourself. It’s so easy, but those determined for success will never give up – and neither should you.

Alfred Ajani was one such graduate finding it difficult to keep afloat in a sea of self-esteem draining job applications. After applying for more than 300 jobs without any positive responses, he decided to go about things a different way; going to companies wasn’t working, so he got the companies to come to him.

The CV ManAlfred, a 22-year-old graduate, found a busy stretch in a London Underground station and held up a sign saying "MARKETING GRADUATE (BA HONS 2.1 COVENTRY UNI) ASK FOR A CV".

The longer he stood there, the more comfortable he got and the more people approached him for his CV. 

But it didn’t end there – being a marketing graduate, Alfred knows how much exposure social media can generate, so he uploaded a picture of himself and his sign to Twitter.

Before long he was trending in London, which brought more people to the station in search of the graduate and his CV.

In fact, Alfred did so well that he had to employ the help of friends and family to sort through the positive messages he was receiving through emails and his Twitter page.

While it's not practical for every graduate looking for a job to follow suit and take to the nation's transport hubs, two simple lessons are to be learned from Alfred’s achievements:

  • DON’T GIVE UP – no matter how hopeless the hunt seems, you’ll never succeed if you don’t try.
  • THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX – with so much competition for every job you’re applying for, you need to stand out from the crowd. Find your own unique way to do this.