Young man overcomes shyness and anxiety to find job, thanks to BCTG’s Talent Match programme

A young man who struggled with acute shyness and anxiety throughout secondary school and college is now blossoming in his first job, thanks to Midland training group BCTG.

Owen Clutterbuck had completed a BTEC in film and media at college with the aim of turning it into a career, but a series of unsuccessful job applications only increased his anxiety and low confidence.

But in November last year he signed up to the Talent Match programme that BCTG runs in Sandwell and he has now landed a Kickstart position in digital marketing with Global Trade Connections in Birmingham.

Owen, aged 21, from Oldbury, said: “I suffered with anxiety during high school and college.

“I have always been really shy and found it difficult to meet new people. Meeting new friends was not that easy for me. I’m still not comfortable making eye contact with people, it’s something I still struggle with.”

Owen attended Ormiston Sandwell Community Academy in Oldbury before leaving in 2016 for his two-year BTEC course at Halesowen College.

He explained: “I did film studies at school and found I enjoyed it so I wanted to proceed further in that career.

“I took a break for a bit after my course because I felt burnt out from college, but then started applying for work.

“I applied for a few jobs, including one as a runner on a film set, but didn’t get anything back, which lowered my confidence a bit.

“I’m not that good with meeting new people so it didn’t really go that well trying to find a job by myself. That’s why I needed help.”

Fortunately, Owen, who was briefly on Universal Credit, was referred by his local job centre to the Talent Match programme.

Owen added: “I thought it would help me out because I wasn’t really good at looking for work by myself. It was the push forward I needed to find a job.

“It was difficult adjusting and meeting new people but I found it got better as time went on.

“It’s also helped me with my confidence and my social and communication skills.”

Owen, who said he enjoyed working on social media and a new podcast club during the Talent Match programme, began his new job in March.

He currently works 25 hours a week but hopes to make it full-time in the future.

Shane Wedderburn, BCTG’s Talent Match coordinator at the Sandwell hub, said: “It has been a pleasure watching Owen flourish.

“He came to us with severe anxiety but by working with him and offering him guidance and intensive mentoring support his confidence quickly grew and his anxiety reduced.

“We were delighted to help find him a job and look forward to his continued success in the future.”

BCTG delivers the Talent Match programme across Sandwell targeting out-of-work 18 to 29-year-olds from its base at 33 High Street in West Bromwich. They can be contacted at 0121 544 6455 (Option 4).

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For further information, please contact:

Chris Luty, Chief Executive Officer,

BCTG Group, European Business Park, Taylors Lane, Oldbury, B69 2BN. Tel: 0121 544 6455

Prepared and issued by Andy Skinner of ASAP PR – mobile 07990 978257.