By Lauren | July 26, 2016 | 0 Comment
As someone who is still considered new to my career and field, I wish I had someone who would’ve told me how important the below actually is from day one. That’s why I created this post in hopes to stop some people from learning the hard way.
Once you walk across that stage and graduate, that shouldn’t be the end of learning for you. Take opportunities to continue to learn throughout your career and life. Whether that’s taking a course on a topic of interest, attending a workshop or networking event, or even asking someone in your industry out for coffee to pick their brain. Those that have an eagerness to learn will go far in life.
To go hand-in-hand with never stop learning, when you’re young, you don’t know everything. In fact, no one knows everything. The sooner you realize this, the sooner you will be on the pathway to success.
I know your teachers probably gave you an idea of what your salary may be when you graduate, but don’t hold that to your grave. Every workplace is different, and when you’re new, with little to no work experience, you can’t expect to be making much more than the minimum. Remember, it’ll take time to build yourself up, so look for the right opportunities versus only thinking about money.
Once you land your first job, don’t let your portfolio fall to the sidelines. Look for opportunities to add things to your portfolio throughout your career, this way it’ll be ready and updated whenever you do decide to look for a new job or opportunity. Add things from your current role in there, do a freelance/side project, volunteer. Never stop building that resume and portfolio of work.
I know it’s a harsh reality, and to be honest, you may be lucky enough to land your dream job right from day one, but don’t leave school expecting that will happen. You’ll likely have jobs or responsibilities that you don’t like, but take that as a learning opportunity and allow it to help you recognize what you like and dislike in your industry. Eventually you’ll get yourself to that dream job, but it may not be all rainbows and butterflies until then.
Don’t feel as if it shows weakness to ask questions, questions help you learn and grow and also show that you aren’t afraid to say that you don’t know something.
LinkedIn isn’t just a resource for when you’re job hunting, it can be a great place for networking, staying in touch with past teachers, colleagues or friends, and an awesome resource to help you build relationships in the industry. (Pssttt.. a lot of my freelance gigs have come off my LinkedIn profile)
Never stop networking and making new connections. Whether these are online connections you make through LinkedIn or Twitter or in-person connections you make at events or conferences, I can’t stress the importance of growing your network.
Even if you’re not looking for a new job, inviting people for coffee that work in your industry to chat and pick their brain can be incredibly valuable. Not only will it help you build connections but it’ll also help you learn about different areas of your industry.
Staying in the loop of your industry is important, so following brands that inspire you or dream companies you’d like to work for is valuable to have the pulse on what they’re doing. You never know when it may come in handy!
What tips do you have? Share below in the comments!