January 23rd saw 67 applicants take part in initial screening and assessment tasks with employers to secure one of the places on Growing Talent.

With a final total of 20 jobs for drivers, administrators, catering and hospitality assistants to services solution operatives and recruitment resourcers across London and Basildon – the heat was on!

You would assume something like this would be intense and cause nerves.  The opposite was true!  Applicants had the time to let their true personalities shine through, have a laugh and get to know other people in the same unemployed position as them.

The employers leading the assessment had a tough job but eventually managed to select 47 to go forward to the final stage on 26 January.  Some employers were taking part for the first time.  Hesitant on how to select people for their roles in the knowledge that if the guys completed the job was theirs and they would join their companies.  Trying to find those ‘rough’ gems they thought would be hard.

Actually, it was easy.  There was so much talent in the room and when you see people having fun and being themselves – not putting on a mask for a short interview – matching is quite natural.

The biggest problem was some employers chose the same candidate!  What it is to be wanted – a great boost to the ego!  Some chose not to select alternative candidates so 12 went forward to the Orientation Week.

Today is Day 2.  Yesterday accomplished a lot.  All 12, from ages ranging from late teens up to the mid-fifties, worked well together breaking down some of those misconceptions we all have about people.  They had to do presentations on each other within 20 minutes of walking into the room – talk about pressure!

Three course lunch was amazing – and a welcome change from cheese sandwiches!!!

They entered the room pretty much as strangers, but left with the seeds of camaraderie growing!

What will today bring……

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