6 Career Tips You Have to Know Before Starting Your First Job
Congratulations to all graduates! Are you excited about what’s next? What are your plans? Applying for your dream job? Starting out on your own?
Well, I can still remember my first job interview after graduation. I was excited and nervous. Though I was prepared, I just couldn’t help feeling the butterflies in my stomach. I couldn’t really recall what I said during the interview but I successfully landed myself a role in the company.
I think most people will be like me, ending up having an “ok” job. You will go to work, do what you have to do from 9 to 6, then return home or hang out with friends, and do it all over again the next day.
Taking Steps to be Different
Frankly, there’s nothing wrong with that. But for me, I didn’t want to drag myself out of bed every Monday. I didn’t want to keep myself busy with meaningless tasks at work. I asked myself, how did others do it differently to reach management positions by their early 30s or even achieve financial freedom, while everyone else was still trying to “work their way up”?
I made that decision to leave my comfort zone, switching to something entirely different. That was the time I began jumping out of bed every morning, excited about the day ahead. I also understood that I could impact others through my work and get rewarded for helping others. I started to have more control over my life.
So before you start your first job, I would like to share my tips and experiences with you, hoping that these will help you jumpstart your career to achieve your goals in life. Here goes!
1. Manage Your Job like You’re the Business Owner.
Nowadays, you can’t keep waiting for the boss to tell you what to do. If you want to grow your career, you’ve to think and act like a business owner. You need to “own” your job, own your roles and responsibilities by putting yourself in the shoes of a business owner, and react as any owner would do. Be truly passionate in what you do. This will actually push you to learn faster and go the extra mile to get things done.
2. Don’t Take the Normal Path.
Face it. You won’t be noticed if you take the same approach everyone else takes. Merely submitting an online resume and expecting to land yourself in your dream job, which hundreds of people are competing for, is not going to work. You have to give people what they want before they ask from you. Show that you can bring value even before you get the job by studying the company and providing feasible suggestions to fill the gaps. That’s how you stand out.
3. Choose the Boss You Want to Work with.
Your boss won’t only be shaping your experience in a company, but may also become the mentor who directs your entire career. He or she will provide you with the opportunities and tools you need for personal development and growth. They may even guide you away from mistakes that can cost you years of wasted time and effort. Besides, being around successful people in your field will also get you into their “inner circle” if you can prove your capabilities. Surrounding yourself with the right people can lead to more opportunities than any company can ever give you.
4. You’ll Need the People Skills.
In the beginning of your career, your technical skills may be what you need to land yourself in your dream job. But as time goes by, those technical skills start to matter less, and how you interact with people starts to matter a lot more. Most people think that if they simply get good enough at their craft, everything will be fine. Yes, it does, but you need to be much more than that. You need to figure out how to add value outside of your role and what your company needs, and give it to them even if they don’t tell you what it is.
5. Stay Hungry for Knowledge.
Are you really “done with studying” the moment you leave school? In reality, almost everything you’ve learned in class can’t be applied in the real world. Successful people read books, attend conferences and talk to others who are doing big things. That’s how they “connect the dots” between seemingly unrelated subjects, and use that insight to create more opportunities. Believing that you can get to almost wherever you want to be, having discipline, and having insecurity about where you are, can secure you a successful and impactful career.
6. Plan for Retirement.
Yes, you are starting your first job but it’s always good to have the end goal in mind. It’ll save you from wasting a lot of time and effort. Many often delay this step, feeling they don’t have sufficient income to make a significant contribution. But they’ll end up starting too late to retire comfortably. It’s okay to start small, and once you establish the habit of contributing money, you can gradually expand your contributions over time. By starting young, you can accumulate through a steady long term wealth building process, and ultimately choose your “job” without worrying about finances.
Ms Eunice Yuen is an avid entrepreneur, currently managing a group of over 100 financial consultants and a team of 10 agency leaders. To find out more about Ms Eunice Yuen, please visit her Facebook Page or email firstname.lastname@example.org