I couldn’t get a job in UK until I removed my native name from my CV – Nigerian man

A middle-aged Nigerian man residing in UK, has said he began getting incredible job offers after he removed his native name from his CV.

34-year-old Inein Victor Garrick, who currently works as a Safety Inspector at Transport for Wales, said he began using his middle name Victor after struggling to get a job years after graduating from South Wales University in the UK.

Speaking with Mirror UK, he said; “I never seemed to get past the first application stages even though on paper, I had all the necessary requirements for at least an interview. In addition, the few calls I had, the recruiters had an issue in saying my first name correctly.

I started using Victor as first name due to the barriers I faced whilst applying to jobs after university. With comments like your name is difficult or hard to pronounce. I always felt I was on the backfoot and sent some unconscious bias. The moment I changed to my middle name Victor, on my CV, within a week, I had multiple calls for interviews.”

According to the young man, rather than call him Inien, people choose to him Victor because it was easier to pronounce.

“That was always the start of the conversation, oh your name is difficult and then asking where I’m from. But when I got to the interview stage, I’d answer when they call out my name and I’d be asked again, almost like ‘are you sure that’s you?,” he said.

He, however, feels he was “hiding part of himself” and has decided to stop going by Victor and return to his Nigerian name.

Inien said; “I think it did really hit me. Last year, I almost felt like I hid a part of myself all those years. It wasn’t shame per se but I wasn’t my true self. People would hear Victor and assume I was British or English and I wasn’t highlighting my true identity.

I’m proud of where I’m from and I think I hid behind Victor. This opened that door to talk about Nigeria and my cultural heritage, it’s a fantastic conversation starter.”

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