Back in February I received the much speculated on "starta-eget" grant, or business-start grant which is a monthly payment for 6 months. The initial application was assessed first by the unemployment office as they facilitate the grant, and then by an independant consultant. After three months a follow-up assessment in carried out.
I had my follow-up meeting on Tuesday with the consultant who writes a short report and gives a recommendation on whether or they should continue to pay my grant for the next three months.
The meeting went fine and the rapport with the consultant was very positive, to the extent that he again mentioned the possibility of co-operation in the future. His organisation, called Network Danderyd helps Swedes who have been abroad for a number of years get back in to the job market here. We discussed the difficulty of getting work without contacts and how hard it is for these people to break in. We also talked about the number of business networks around, and how much easier it is as a business owner to get out and get your name out there, but as a potential employee there are few opportunities.
So perhaps the trick is, if you are looking for work, to start a business as a consultant, get out and network, market yourself and see if any work comes out of it - employment or otherwise. You might actually decide you'd rather run your show anyway!