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Jobless Swede offers salary as finder's fee

After being out of work for eleven months, economist Michael Sundblad from Lund, in southern Sweden, decided to try a new approach and is now offering his first month's pay in finder's fee to whomever gets him hired.

Published: 11 Nov 2011 15:55 CET

”I thought: 'Almost everyone has a network of people, most people have jobs, and everyone wants money. If I give something, perhaps I will get something back,” Sundblad told The Local.

Sundblad is a trained economist, specializing in international marketing and sales. He has previously worked in Canada and his dream job would involve working in both countries.

During the time he has been unemployed, he has applied for near 300 jobs, only to receive standardized letters declining to give him an interview.

”It is a jungle out there with so many people unemployed at the moment. I felt like all I got was automated response, I couldn't get my voice heard,” he said.

Born in Canada and with dual citizenship, he was surprised to find that despite being bilingual and having international work experience, he didn't seem to be able to compete on the Swedish labour market.

The idea to offer his first month's salary as a finders fee was born out of the frustration of not being able to break through this barrier.

”So this seemed like a new and different approach, and most people could do with some extra money before Christmas,” said Sundblad.

According to fresh figures from Sweden's National Employment Office (Arbetsförmedlingen) the number of unemployed people in the country has decreased slightly from 8.8 percent of the labour force in November 2010 to 8.2 percent in 2011.

But at the same time, the number of newly registered unemployed has increased.

”We are seeing more clear signs that the strengthening of the labour market is starting to weaken. The latest statistics show an increase in people being laid off and a decrease in the number of unemployed getting hired,” said Clas Olsson, head analyst at the agency to news agency TT, adding that he fears that unemployment figures will rise again.

Sundblad is hoping that his unorthodox attempt of getting hired might turn out to have been a stroke of genius.

Obviously a better paid job will generate a higher finders fee, but to Sundblad it isn't so much about the salary as it is about getting a chance and trying to find a job in which he can be happy.

As well as an interview in Swedish newspaper Metro, Sundblad has used different social media to reach as many as possible with his unusual request. He has already started to get responses.

”A Stockholm company called me after reading my request and I have set up a meeting with them next week,” Sundblad told The Local.

Rebecca Martin (rebecca.martin@thelocal.se)


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