5 Tips For College Grads on the Job Hunt

You’ve got that diploma in your hands and your trying to navigate the job world. Finding a job can be tough, but with hard work it can be done. There are a few things to keep in mind though when your seeking out your first job. Always keep your options open but be mindful of what each offer or opportunity could potentially bring you. Valorie Burton, a life coach and the founder of The Coaching and Positive Psychology (CaPP), shares with five tips for new college grads to get make them successful in landing their first job.

1.  Go for what you really want.

Don’t downsize your dream before you’ve even attempted it.  Go directly for the type of job you want while simultaneously being flexible.  It is a challenging job market, but it is not impossible.  Remember the phrase, “Shoot for the moon.  Even if you miss, you’ll land among stars.”  It applies here.  Don’t allow fear to keep you from going after what you really want.

2.  Place is more important than position.

Landing a job in your field sometimes means landing a job that is beneath your skill level.  But if that job puts you in the right environment, you can make connections and be ready when the right opportunity opens up.  Be willing to pay your dues by getting your foot in the door, then show your employer your energy, dedication and ability.  You may get an opportunity to move up once you’ve proven yourself.

3.  No one owes you anything.

One of the biggest complaints I hear from leaders in today’s organizations is that too many young people have a sense of entitlement.  Experience is a great teacher.  Soak up all the knowledge you can.  Get a mentor.  Listen more than you speak.  Don’t expect a promotion or raise because you show up and do your job.  That’s what you’re paid to do.  Employers don’t owe you appreciation, more money or a bigger job title.

4.  Build a foundation for where you want to be ten  years from now.

Know where you want to be in five years or ten years.  If you’re not living your vision, you’re probably living someone else’s.  So have a vision for where you want to go so you don’t wander aimlessly in your career only to find yourself frustrated later because you didn’t aim high.

5.  Build a life, not just a career.

Work hard, yes, but also play hard.  Think about what you want for your personal life.  Don’t live to work, work to live.  When you consider jobs, think about the lifestyle you want to lead – do you want to be on call 24-7?  Do you want to live near family or do you really not mind moving across the country or around the world?  Are you willing to live far away for a few years, but plan to move back to your current area? Will your job give you time for a life outside of work?

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