“This lady did not know us, we were not even from the same country and yet she decided to help us, so I decided to help others.”
Ven Panicker is Global Skills Regional Marketing Coordinator and remembers his decision to move from a product orientated career to one that is human centred, thanks to the kindness of a stranger.
Ven, along with his wife and son, arrived in Australia from Mumbai, India in 2009. The family landed in Adelaide knowing no one. Ven recalls, “We came out of the airport and were looking around not knowing what to do. It was a new country, new city, new people.
“We had to look for a place to stay and we needed a home. We were walking around the city, going into all the real estate offices we found, but we couldn’t get a rental because we had no references.”
The family were getting desperate to find a home when they walked into a small real estate office and met a stranger who would ultimately change Ven’s career path. Ven remembers, “One day we went into a small real estate office and met this lady. She said ‘ok I can see you need a place and you’re desperate, I will be your reference.’ She helped us.”
The help this stranger offered didn’t end there. Ven explains, “We were talking and she asked what we were doing before we came to Australia. I told her that I was in the fire protection sales industry for 10-12 years. She recalled that she had sold an office to a fire protection company and she gave the manager a call.”
This call helped Ven secure his first job in Australia. Ven says, “Within two weeks of arriving here, I had a job, which I later came to know was a miracle, most people struggle in the beginning.”
When Ven’s wife got a position within the Employment Services sector, he came to understand what they do. He says, “We started talking and I slowly began to understand what they were doing and was really impressed, I thought this is something really good. They are helping the community, they are helping people.”
Ven says he started thinking about using his sales skills and talents to help others, to give back to the community. He thought about the help he received from a stranger, “This lady did not know us, we were not even from the same country and yet she decided to help us, so I decided to help others.” Ven determined he would try to get into the Employment Service sector when the opportunity arose.
Ven got the opportunity when the fire protection company he was working for moved to Perth. He began applying for roles within the sector and, after about a year, he secured his first Employment Services job.
Fortunately for us, Ven and his family decided to move to Sydney and he is now working with Global Skills.
Ven has been with Global Skills for almost four years and gives a glimpse into his role, “When job seekers are job ready, I place them. I try to find suitable, sustainable work for them. I like to meet with the job seeker and employer before placement. I want to make sure they are both happy, otherwise the job won’t last long.”
As for the organisation, Ven says, “Global Skills is like a family. Everyone looks after everyone else. Job seekers, employers and case managers all work as a team. And the management is really fantastic. I love working at Global Skills.”
“I Love my job!”
After all these years, Ven still keeps in contact with the woman in Adelaide who helped him find his first home and job in Australia. He is grateful for the assistance received and thankful that it led him to a role that he loves.
Ven is a much-valued member of Global Skills and we are proud to have him on our team.