5 Nigerians Share How Job Hunting Has Affected Their Lives

April 7, 1990


What happens when people suddenly lose their jobs due to COVID-19 (thanks, but no thanks 2020) or circumstances beyond their control? For many people in Nigeria, life gets tough. Make that tough because it’s already the ghetto over here.

We got 5 people to share their job hunting chronicles with us, and honestly, the struggle is real!

Read on.

Yetty

It was my first job after school and I was just really grateful that I had a job, even though it was the absolute worst. My boss called me one day and explained that they weren’t making money and so couldn’t sustain the staff strength. He added that since he had been spending his personal money on the company, he wanted to invest in something else and would have to let me go.

This happened in February.

One thing I regret is that I have nothing to show for a year’s work in terms of funds. I didn’t have income insurance. I wasn’t earning much either; had to pay rent in Lagos, feed, and take care of basic stuff. Looking for a job has been stressful. Before losing my job, I was trying to transition into a new career entirely and I’ve been studying and all. But you know how the job market is, they ask for three years of experience for entry-level roles and even internships (all my life, I always thought internships were meant for one to learn and acquire skills). So yeah, it’s been very hard.


Jeph

I was working in this place where I was handling Marketing. Frankly, I loved my colleagues and the impact of our work. The CEO on the other hand, I didn’t like very much. He paid little to no attention to employee welfare and would stress the life out of you. The work hours were terrible and he’d call at ungodly hours. I once resigned and he begged me to stay. He wouldn’t let me go on leave because I was a “key man risk”. He never increased salaries the three years I worked with him.

At the beginning of the COVID-19 lockdown, I had to work overtime to ensure that the business ran as smoothly as possible. Still, no raise. There was even the risk of a pay cut. One Sunday, I didn’t pick this man’s call because I was asleep. When I did, oga said I was acting stupidly, and that at my age, he was running a business worth ₦22 million so I should stop being irresponsible.

I waited for my salary and I resigned in March last year (2020), but the drama lingered till October. He wanted to punish me with handover like he’d usually do to others and I ignored him. I instead requested for my statutory payments to be made and he ignored me until I sent him an email. They finally responded that they were going to pay up, but then they sent a lawyer to me saying I threatened them and I should come to sign an undertaking. This was about 3 months post-resignation. They also said I obstructed their revenue inflow by not handing over and some other nonsense like that. Then went on to threaten to sue me for $36000 and 4 Million Naira. Thing is, their claims were frivolous and asides from that, I was never given an employment letter and wasn’t bound by any contract terms to follow any set procedures. I sha had my lawyer do the talk with theirs till I never heard from them again. I have sha learnt the importance of knowing the labour laws, work insurance and how to handle employment contracts.


Temi

I resigned o.

I was working for a bunch of companies and one particular day I just typed my resignation letter and sent it the next week to most of them at the same time because I was tired. How would I be having thirteen-hour meetings, and they’ll still schedule a meeting for the next day!? It didn’t make sense to me. I was juggling like 9 companies at the same time including my travel agency thing. It was a lot. I was always tired and never even got much sleep. I’m job hunting, but not totally unemployed. I already found a job in the U.S. Getting it was very difficult and my contract will be over in 4 months. I’m sending my resignation to the remaining companies by the end of the week.


Chuks

I’m out of a job, and it actually hasn’t been easy. Although, I haven’t really been applying for long. Let’s say from the beginning of the year I’ve sent over 20 applications and I haven’t gotten any invites yet. Even when I managed to get invited to one, it sounded like a fraud. I was so tired because it was evident that the guy who put out the advert meant to defraud job seekers.
In addition to this, my mum feels like I don’t want to go get a job, and I’m comfortable staying at home which sucks.
I think it’s due to the fact that I started my own brand and she wants immediate monetary results. I keep telling her that it’s a whole different process, and doesn’t just happen like magic. Parents just see ‘pressing of phone and laptop’ as a waste of time. In my opinion, they need to change their mentality, lol.


Ije

I freelance in Digital Marketing and Brand Strategy. Sometimes, I pitch to brands or wait for them to approach me. I’ve not been on a campaign for like 6 months now, so it’s been really difficult trying to lay my hands-on jobs. The ones I get, sometimes when I reach out to them, they always promise to get back to me but don’t.

Omo. The financial strain has been really terrible, I won’t lie. I don’t get funds from home like that and most times, the only thing I depend on to sustain myself are funds I get from jobs. People hit me up for Social Media Management once in a while, but sometimes something comes up and they’re not able to complete the deal. It has made my finances terrible. Right now, I don’t even think I want to go through the stress of looking for jobs again, I am tired. It’s draining and exhausting. If the jobs come, good because at this point I just feel like all my efforts are fruitless. I don’t know what else to do. In as much as that’s a mood, I can’t just dey. I’ll still pitch to brands and companies even if I said I won’t. It’s just generally discouraging.





Employers or even employees themselves invested in insuring their income hasn’t been normalised in Nigeria. It is this vacuum Casava is trying to fill with its Income Protection Insurance. Casava’s motivation stems from the ever-rising unemployment rate in Nigeria and the fact that this has plunged many people into financial distress.

In a nutshell, Casava helps you earn after losing your job, save money on healthcare and insure every other thing you care about. Get early access.



Susan Nwaobiala

Join The Conversation

Bring a friend.

You'll like this

Watch

Now on Zikoko

Rich Nigerian Auntie
June 23, 2021

A rich Nigerian auntie doesn’t refer to those aunties from your father’s side that do nothing but comment on your weight and ask you when you’d be getting married. The rich Nigerian auntie is an aesthetic bigger than one person — and here’s how to be sure you are one… 1. You have the dress […]

June 23, 2021

They say, “money is not everything” but have you seen credit alerts? Particularly these 5 Types listed below? 1. Alert from someone who said “send your account number” ages ago This is how wide you’ll smile. May such people not sleep until they’ve credited you oh. 2. Salary alerts Especially when your salary has finished […]

June 23, 2021

Music they say gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and life to everything. Music is healing, it is an explosive expression of humanity, something we are all touched by. No matter what culture we’re from, everyone loves music and that is why we are particularly excited about this […]

June 23, 2021

The morning after having sex should be the most romantic, regardless of the relationship you have with the woman you just had sex with. You have to be grateful for her act of service. How you greet her the morning after is the easiest way to show your gratitude. Here’s a list of ways to […]

Recommended Quizzes

What are you like in a relationship?
February 7, 2020

Your taste in music can say a lot about you, and this time, it’s going to reveal what you are like in a relationship. So, pick a few of your favourite Nigerian love songs, and we’ll let you know if you’re typically a distant, passionate or unbothered partner. Here you go:

December 5, 2019

We already tried to guess how much you have in your account and your current net worth, and we think we did a pretty great job (keep any complaints to yourself). Now, we’re going to try and guess your monthly salary based on your relationship with money. Oya, take the quiz: 11 Timed Quizzes For […]

November 22, 2019

It can be very stressful when you’re trying to find the love of your life, but you only keep meeting people that are exactly like your yeye ex. To help you be more aware of that problem, we’ve created a quiz that lets you know the kind of people you are attracting. Take it to […]

how tall are you
March 11, 2020

Did your parents give you enough beans when you were growing up? If they did, then you’re probably around 6’0″ and above. Either way, we created a quiz that can guess your current height (pretty accurately, if we do say so ourselves). Take to see if we nailed it:

More from Inside Life

Rich Nigerian Auntie
June 23, 2021

A rich Nigerian auntie doesn’t refer to those aunties from your father’s side that do nothing but comment on your weight and ask you when you’d be getting married. The rich Nigerian auntie is an aesthetic bigger than one person — and here’s how to be sure you are one… 1. You have the dress […]

June 23, 2021

They say, “money is not everything” but have you seen credit alerts? Particularly these 5 Types listed below? 1. Alert from someone who said “send your account number” ages ago This is how wide you’ll smile. May such people not sleep until they’ve credited you oh. 2. Salary alerts Especially when your salary has finished […]

June 23, 2021

The morning after having sex should be the most romantic, regardless of the relationship you have with the woman you just had sex with. You have to be grateful for her act of service. How you greet her the morning after is the easiest way to show your gratitude. Here’s a list of ways to […]

June 21, 2021

We asked Nigerians the worst zodiac signs they have dated and these are some of the responses we received: Queen, 22  Virgos (August 23 – September 22) I believe in astrology but I don’t exactly live by it. Even though  I know that the compatibility of signs does not determine the success of a relationship, […]

June 19, 2021

The subject of this week’s Sex Life is a 27-year-old heterosexual woman who rarely has sex. She talks about almost getting married to an ex boyfriend who betrayed her trust by cheating on her multiple times and how this experience shaped her interest in sex.

Watch

Trending Videos

Zikoko Originals

December 14, 2020
What happens when a group of chatty young Nigerians talk about things they're passionate about? You get Nigerians talk. A show that discusses very familiar struggles for the average Nigerian. From relationship deal breakers to sex education with Nigerian parents to leaving Nigeria, be prepared for a ride.
November 2, 2020
'The Couch' is a Zikoko series featuring real life stories from anonymous people.
October 26, 2020
A collection of videos documenting some of the events of the EndSARS protests.
June 22, 2020
'The Couch' is a Zikoko series featuring real life stories from anonymous people.
June 22, 2020
Hacked is an interesting new series by Zikoko made up of fictional but hilarious chat conversations.
June 4, 2020
What happens when a group of chatty young Nigerians talk about things they're passionate about? You get Nigerians talk. A show that discusses very familiar struggles for the average Nigerian. From relationship deal breakers to sex education with Nigerian parents to leaving Nigeria, be prepared for a ride.
June 2, 2020
Quickie is a video series where everyone featured gets only one minute to rant, review or do absolutely anything.
May 14, 2020
Isolation Diary is a Zikoko series that showcases what isolation is like for one young Nigerian working from home due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
March 12, 2020
Life is already hard. Deciding where to eat and get the best lifestyle experiences, isn't something you should stress about. Let VRSUS do that for you.

Z! Stacks

Here's a rabbit hole of stories to lose yourself in:

Zikoko amplifies African youth culture by curating and creating smart and joyful content for young Africans and the world.
X