First, congratulations to the graduating class of 2017, you did it, you did it!
College is a BIG DEAL. Not to rain on anyone’s parade but pretty soon you’re going to get a rude awakening, a wake-up call from this thing called life a.k.a adulting.
YOU HAVE NO EXPERIENCE! So, you’re going to have to learn how to sizzle. What I mean is, embrace the process and be patient with yourself. Create a hit list of dream jobs and go get ’em!
Attaining a college degree and consistently showing up to class for participation points was only the beginning of the battle. Now, you’re going to have to work hard for your money! Since you’re not going to have 5-7 yrs experience, you’ll soon realize MOST if not ALL, jobs you apply to (or want to apply to) either want 3-5 years experience or 7-10 years, so unless you’ve been working since childbirth, you don’t have that extensive of a career life span, yet; so you know what that means? YOU GUESSED IT:
You’re going to have to grind it out and hustle! Here are a few things you should know about what to expect post-grad and just to remember in general:
1.STAY HUNGRY, STAY HUMBLE!
You’re going to have to show employers you’re hungry to learn and eager for more food by showing them WHY you deserve a seat at that table. What do I mean? What I mean is this; you’ve done the academic part, you’ve secured a degree that allows you to pull up a chair to the table, but it doesn’t necessarily show employers why they should hire you or why they should feed you*!
Often times, employers seek out fresh talents with interesting perspectives, although they’re willing to take a chance on you, you’re going to have to consistently work you’re a** off to show, you’re not just some know-it-all, entitled “millennial;” you’re actually a hard worker. Since you don’t have any experience you’re going to get stuck doing ALOT of the work NOBODY wants to do, you’re going to feel like you’re on an endless road of paying your dues and questioning all of your life choices. You may have to take a job where you’re barely making $40,000 a year. It’s not going to be fun or even glamorous no matter who you end of working for. Just giving you the trill spill; You’re very “green”, a.k.a beginner status a.k.a super entry level. Be prepared to suck up your pride just to build some clout on your resumé. After about a year or two in, you’ll see your supervisor and colleagues will begin to take you more seriously which shows them, you’re consistent, humble and always hungry. You’ll always have a place mat and food at the table.
2. SHOW UP AND SHOW OUT.
Unless you have unlimited PTO (which some people do have) you’re going to have to show up EVERYDAY. At least, if you’re willing to do your best and stand out from the rest to be that rockstar employee. When undergrads ask me, do I miss college, or what’s one thing I miss about the experience…you know what I tell them? I get it REAL! I tell them the truth!
Just like I’m telling you NOW, if I was sick, or stayed out too late the night before class, or just didn’t want to go because I’d rather hang out with my friends in class, I COULD! That’s what college teaches us, showing up is 80% of success. If you skip class, you can take a nap or go do your own thing. Unfortunately, in the real world, life doesn’t work like that. You’re not striving for As or Bs, you’re praying you’ve got enough money in the bank to pay your bills and maybe treat yourself to some Chiptole. Stay ready, so you don’t have to get ready! You’re going to want to not get up at 6 a.m. or 7 a.m. or 8 a.m., you’re going to hit the snooze button ALOT of times and dread your morning commutes. But as SOON as you begin your day, be prepared to always do your best.
3.DON’T PLAY YOURSELF! Get as much experience as possible. Possibilities are ENDLESS.
Contrary to popular belief, you absolutely do not have to restrict your awesomeness by only applying to jobs within your field. The first step in applying for most jobs is that fact, that you, in fact, have a piece of paper on it that says you’ve secured your degree. You have a bachelor of whatever and that’s the first key to getting in the door. Just promise me, you won’t get comfortable or get lazy. You have to remember to remain challenged if you’re bored as for more work. You never want to feel stagnant in your career because one day you’ll wake up wondering why you never chased your dreams and look at yourself, like congratulations, you played yourself!
Apply to any and every job you THINK you may be interested in. In college, we have this crazy vision that we have our entire lives mapped out and know exactly what we’re going to be doing, perhaps some of us do. But if you’re like me, life doesn’t go according to plan and you’re going to have to roll with the punches.
My very first boss after graduating from college told me this, What you’re doing today, isn’t what you’re going to be doing in 5 or 10 years. Heck, you might not even be doing this in 1-2 years from now.
I didn’t understand what he meant back then. It was so hard to find a job where I could see myself that I was putting so much pressure on myself to make the right decision in where I would work next. But here’s the sad truth, as a new graduate you CAN’T afford to be picky unless you’re some golden child and you CAN’T afford to skip out on something that could be an amazing opportunity. Don’t pressure yourself out of your blessings, follow your intuition and chase your dreams!