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Advice for Graduates Seeking Their First Job

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Transitioning from the classroom or campus to the office is a big change, and it won't matter if you are taking a job in the public or private sector. It is an entirely different world, and instead of doing your best on assignments and listening to professors, it is the time to apply all that you have learned. Naturally, it is important that you make all of the right decisions as you seek a first job, and that includes knowing just what sorts of jobs you should seek. While we could offer you some standard job hunting suggestions, we want to help you look for the ideal jobs first.

Obviously, you are going to look in the field or industry in which you had some training, and hopefully your school has some support in aligning you with potential employers. Whether or not you do get that sort of support in your search for a first job, there are some highly recommended tips from major business organizations like Entrepreneur and Harvard Business Review. These are universally applicable tips that can often make you stand out from the crowd of fellow graduates also seeking their first jobs, too.

Let's look at them one by one:

  • Don't try to look more knowledgeable than you are - In many parts of the world, people say things like "fake it until you make it," implying you don't need to be experienced if you are good at looking experienced. All of the experts say to avoid this behavior. Why? Not only will it put you at risk for failure at your first job, but it costs you many opportunities. After all, if you try to appear knowledgeable, you don't ask important questions. If you don't ask those questions, you don't advance in your industry or career; you don't get invaluable experience. Instead, think of your first job as the very best learning opportunity and choose jobs that can give you the information you desire or need.
  • Set the same sort of boundaries you set for yourself while studying - You didn't study to the point of exhaustion (hopefully), and even if you did, you learned that it harmed rather than helped. Start your search for a career with a firm that is not going to expect longer than normal hours or force you into a state of constant overdrive.
  • Think and speak collaboration - It hardly matters what field you are in, the modern business world emphasizes collaboration as much as individual performance. As you seek your first job, remember to look for companies or positions that encourage this approach, and be sure you mention this during any interviews.

Don't act like you are more experienced, choose a company that has realistic expectations of you and be clear about your desire to grow and work with others, and you should find the perfect first job.






Writer, C. (2017). 10 Tips to Help Graduates Succeed in Their First Job. [online] Entrepreneur. Available at: https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/246721 [Accessed 22 Aug. 2017].

Harvard Business Review. (2017). Five Tips for Your First Job. [online] Available at: https://hbr.org/2012/06/five-tips-for-your-first-job [Accessed 22 Aug. 2017].

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