If you’re a grad chasing your first role, you might find traditional career guidance is often too simplistic or generic to apply to you. Here’s some advice you can adopt:
Basically, one size fits all, means NO size fits all! The only way that it would ever be true is if all human beings were exactly the same. Of course, everyone knows we are all individuals who are different, with different viewpoints. Therefore, one size fits all will never work. Beware of one size fits all career advice.
Looking for work is a full-time job as it takes time and effort to get a job. But at the same time, make sure your job-hunting activities aren’t creating gaps on your CV. To avoid this, combine your job search with CV-building activities such as studying. Voluntary or part-time projects show you as active and will also help keep your skills sharp.
In all industries, a pattern of job-hopping could be an indication of someone making poor career choices or it presents you as difficult to work with. In the early stages of your career, it is not so much an issue, because trying out different roles can help you discover your strengths and interests.
“Taking a low-skilled or short-term job will trap you,” this is perhaps a graduate’s greatest fear. But the fact is fewer employers will criticize you for taking paid work over being inactive. Rather than focusing on the number of job titles in your CV, highlight what you have learned or achieved each time. Every role should give you an opportunity to shine and to increase your experience.
“Follow your passion” gives you the unrealistic idea that your career is only going to be fulfilling if it is based on your life’s passion. This can make you unnecessarily self-critical, especially if you fail to get the job you think you should aspire to. Remember that most people’s careers take twists and turns, opportunities arise that you might never have anticipated. Don’t be narrow-minded because of one role, as this could prevent you from seeing other equally satisfying roles.
‘Paper’ CVs are history…with the rise in social networks such as LinkedIn, many hiring managers and recruiters will contact you through your profile. But this does not mean the demise of the CV. Although social media is undoubtedly useful, don’t neglect your digital PDF CV as companies still want to see your CV upfront.
The job searching process will present many highs and lows. We wish you the best of luck with your job search.