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I failed my training exams. Is there any hope for my future now?

Congratulations!

No, seriously. This is going to be a game-changer in your career.

So, you think I am mocking you? No. Don’t get me wrong. I was in the exact same position a few years back.

As a fresher and an engineering graduate, the dream of all the students in our batch was to join one of the IT giants. I tried hard, attended off-campus interviews, cleared the aptitude, GD, HR round and finally got placed in Infosys. No coding /programming tests.

First job with an IT giant, good pay for a fresher, six months training, and all this right here in my home town. I was on cloud nine.

But wait … Did I tell you something? — I hate programming. It hated me too. I suck at coding.  Years of no passion for something cannot be changed by six months of training. Their training program was good, I don’t deny it. But it was not working for me.

So when I took up the two exams at the end of six months — I flunked big time.

According to the policy, we should be terminated. About 20-25 of us were called to the HR cabin. We were all so ashamed to even make eye contact with each other. Myself and one of my batch mates who had become good friends during the six months training, were amongst them. The HR asked us to surrender our ID cards, gave some motivational speech like “failure is stepping stone to success” … blah … blah … and asked us to leave. That’s it. It was all over in a day. Six months effort, all gone waste. I had missed a lot of interviews from other companies as I was attending Infosys training for six months.

We were unemployed freshers, yet again.

After bidding goodbye to our batch mates, most of them who had pitiful eyes, My friend and I took the local train to return home. She was crying a lot. I was sitting there, confused. As the train kept moving, We spoke about how happy our parents were when we bought them gifts with our first-month salary. How happy we were that we no longer had to look for a job.

Suddenly, my friend tells me “I am a failure. I am going to jump out of this moving train.”

I was so shocked and scared. It took me a while to talk her out of it and we got down in our station.

I came home and broke the news. My parents were little shaken as I had been a very good student with excellent grades throughout school and college. They were worried about how I was feeling more than anything else.

My dad told me “Take a break for a month. Then try to do something you like.”

There were many hardships I faced for the next one year – becoming a recluse, nosy relatives wanting to know why I was chucked out, attending four to five interviews every day (non-programming). The next batch of grads were in the race by then.

Today, I am in a profession that I love — a Soft Skill trainer and I love it. I would have never enjoyed working as a programmer even if I had cleared the Infosys test. My friend who wanted to jump off the train now works for an MNC as a graphic designer. She loves it too. Sometimes, We talk about that day (Dec 18, 2006)  but end it on a positive note that both of us made a lot of good friends in those six months. In fact, she is now married to one of our batch mates she met during Infy training.

Take this failure as a blessing. Go find your true passion.

There is lot more out there than being an SE at Infosys.

This column originally appeared on Quora.

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