Advertising
Advertising

Fresh Out of School: 6 Ways to Jumpstart your Career

Fresh Out of School: 6 Ways to Jumpstart your Career

Being fresh out of school and unemployed is one of the toughest times in one’s life. As if having to deal with student loans was not enough, the graduates also have to start fighting for a job. And the thing that could make this even harder is having the wrong diploma. For this same reason many students research the job market before choosing a major, a staggering 82% of them, in fact.

Moreover, many students are encouraged to go for a STEM degree, believing that this will make it easier for them to find a job, according to the Accenture Strategy 2015 US College Graduate Employment Study. It seems as though the newer generations are thinking in a practical and long-term way, because many of them could end up jobless if not careful.

Unfortunately, this is the cruel reality, but with a little bit of hard work, willingness to push on, and some creativity, these young 20-somethings could find employment sooner than they expect. Here are a few strategies that could help recent graduates jumpstart their careers.

1. Set up a LinkedIn account and mind your manners on other social media websites

The first thing you should do, if you want a job, is make a quality resume. It should serve as an effective selling pitch for your skills, education, and experience. When an employer looks at it, they should want to call you based only on that piece of paper. However, as well as having the physical resume, you should make an online one by setting up a LinkedIn account.

Advertising

Be wary, as this is a strictly professional platform. People use it to find employment, recruiters use it to find employees and serious entrepreneurs use it to make business connections. It is a great way to connect and build a strong professional network you could use in the future. Nevertheless, before setting up, learn all about the rules and the best way to make your profile effective. (For example, by using the right keywords or writing a great summary that stands out.)

One more thing to pay attention to, when you start looking for a job, are your other social media accounts. When you apply for a job, be sure that the recruiter will look you up online. Everything connected to you will pop up in that search, so exhibiting good online etiquette is a must. Deleting your drunk photos, profanity-filled posts, and any other incriminating thing would be a great idea.

2. Start freelancing to get used to working and earn some initial money

Freelancer on laptop

    While you are job hunting, try working as a freelancer to get a sense of the work ethic. However, if you are good at it, with time, it could turn into something bigger and better. Perhaps, you’ll continue freelancing even when you are employed full-time.

    Advertising

    Being unemployed means being broke. So, doing freelance work gives you the opportunity to earn at least some money. It may not be much at first, but at least you won’t be completely penniless. And if you decide to try it out, there are many websites where you could find clients and offer your services.

    3. Prepare a tailored resume for each job you apply to

    This is important to mention because many people do not understand the process of making a resume and a cover letter. You should create an all-encompassing “master resume” with all the information about your formal education, courses you’ve taken, skills, hobbies, volunteering experience, the works. When you start applying for multiple jobs, tailor the CV to the job in question using the “master resume” as a starting point.

    Every work position is different, so every job application should be different, too. Also, if you are obliged to send a cover letter, write a new one each time. Do not send the same cover letter. Having a bad, non-updated resume, leaves a bad impression of you. It means that you are too lazy to make an effort, or that you are not familiar with the general rules of job hunting.

    4. Start reading books on business, body language, human dynamics and negotiation

    Staying educated after college is a must. When someone says educated, it means being up to date with current events, changes in the industry you want to work in, business news or how companies operate nowadays. You find information on all of this by browsing the internet or reading books. You should read about the business world to learn how things really work, and what it takes to get ahead.

    Advertising

    For example, working 9-5 was once the norm, but today more and more companies are starting to cut down on the working hours and switching to 6-hour work days. Also, a lot of companies now have open-space offices, instead of those little cubicles.

    Another good topic to read on is body language and how humans interact with each other. Understanding human psychology would benefit you greatly. It could help you understand the behavior of the people around you, and allow you to effectively resolve conflicts and tailor your approach to different personality types.

    Additionally, you would learn how to easily communicate with others in general, without losing your temper or failing to get your point across. Good manners, confident body language, a positive attitude and a few strategic sentences here and there can often get you further in your career than sitting quietly in the corner and churning out reports, hoping that your hard work will get noticed.

    5. Expand your technology-related skill sets

    Advertising

    Technology and science

      Having the right qualifications and being a people person are important important in business, but you also need to be familiar with the latest technology. And I’m not just talking about knowing how to effectively use the MS Office Suit and having professional-looking social media profiles – you need to master the type of software used in your industry, have some basic computer maintenance skills, have working knowledge of popular cloud-based services, be familiar with some of the latest tech gadgets and so on.

      After you master those basic technology skills, you should work on more complicated ones. For example, learn HTML, Java or WordPress. Dabble in Photoshop and video editing or learn about digital marketing. Luckily, there are many options to choose from, from easy to difficult ones. Whatever you settle for, it will be useful because computer literacy is as important as anything else.

      6. Think about long-term progress

      When you start browsing for jobs and building your career, it is important to think long-term. Think about the future and where you would like your career to go. For example, would you want to spend your whole life in an office or do you want to have more freedom? Do you want to work in only one industry or have mixed types of jobs?

      Consider the risk of locking yourself down in one place without the ability to change anything. The best thing you could do is build a skill set that could be used in several similar jobs. This way you would progress without any difficulties, and switching jobs would be easier, too.

      There is a lot more to learn about building a career, and how life works in general, but once you’ve got these tips covered, you can learn all the other big stuff through personal experience. Just be sure to work on improving yourself every single day, and be persistent in your job-hunting efforts.

      More by this author

      Djordje Todorovic

      Blogger, Gamer Extraordinaire

      20 Things Smart People Don’t Do (And What They Do Instead) 5 Tips on How to be a More Responsible Person 7 Essential Tools Every Serious Startup Needs 7 Common Struggles of Minimalist Beginners and How to Overcome Them 4 Shortcuts to Self Improvement for Tech Junkies and Nerds

      Trending in Career Advice

      1 10 Job Search Tools Every Jobseekers Need To Know About 2 10 Websites To Learn Something New In 30 Minutes A Day 3 50 Great People To Follow On LinkedIn, No Matter Your Industry 4 If You Have This Key Behavior, You’ll Be More Successful Than 90% Of People 5 How To Climb Up Your Career Ladder Faster Than Others In A Big Corporate.

      Read Next

      Advertising
      Advertising

      Last Updated on November 5, 2018

      20 Best Places to Work for a Great Career in 2018

      20 Best Places to Work for a Great Career in 2018

      Looking for a job? There’s no doubt to the fact you will want to work with a company that appreciates you for who you are.

      Well, good news. The labor market today is one that has peened up with more opportunities for advancement and personal employee improvement. This is partly due to the fact that a lot of companies have been made to understand the value of their biggest assets: the employees.

      To wit, here’s a list of companies- across a wide array of industries- that have been able to develop working environments that are healthy and accommodating to workers.

      Take a look at these 20 best place to work for a great career:

      1. Salesforce, San Francisco, California,

        Salesforce is in the information technology business and the company ranks highest due to their commitment to learning and innovation. They are ready to try new things and everyone with a new idea is always welcome to share it at the company. The company has also been known to exhibit an exceptional approach to alignment.

        Find out more about careers in Salesforce

        2. Wegmans Food Markets Inc.,Rochester, New York

          Based in Rochester, New York, employees have been known to enjoy a sense of purpose from working here. The company has been able to achieve an optimal level of engagement across all working tiers and they’ve been able to achieve great things together. They even do deliveries.

          Find out more about careers in Wegmans

          3. Ultimate Software, Weston, Florida

            Employees get amazing benefits here but that’s not the only reason why this place is so awesome to work. Whenever there is a need or a death of an Ultipeep or any of other family members, the company shows love and support like no other.

            Find out more about careers in Ultimate Software

            Advertising

            4.The Boston Consulting Group, Inc., Boston, Massachusetts

              Development is at the center of anything that goes on here. The business is about people and employees are the company’s biggest asset. Employees are able to challenge the status and also leave impacts on clients.

              Find out more about careers in The Boston Consulting Group

              5. Edward Jones, St. Louis, Missouri

                Edward Jones is admired for their ability to acknowledge history without being mired down by it. The company builds on a solid foundation but there is also a level of flexibility that allows for innovation.

                Find out more about careers in Edward Jones

                6. Kimpton Hotels and Restaurants, San Francisco, California

                  Kimpton is a trendsetter in the hospitality industry. The company always strives to try something different and that perspective is welcomed there at all times. Enjoy the weekends with luxury rooms, conformable mattress, furnished and well dressed service staff. A great opportunity for job seekers.

                  Find out more about careers in Kimpton Hotels and Restaurants

                  7. Workday, Pleasanton, California

                    Newbies will find no issues with feeling welcome and at home here as this has always been a core culture component of the IT giant. Everyone is treated like family and this fosters a sense of oneness.

                    Find out more about careers in Workday

                    8. Genentech, South San Francisco, California

                    Advertising

                      Here, employees are encouraged to be themselves. There is a feeling of care, safety, and acceptance that you get here that you can’t get at many firms. The development of an all-inclusive environment has always been foundational.

                      Find out more about careers in Genetech

                      9. Deloitte, New York, New York

                        Deloitte is one of the biggest professional service providers in the world, noted for their focus on constant learning, development and improvement. They invest in their employees and are concerned about their well being.

                        Find out more about careers in Deloitte

                        10. Baird, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

                          Baird is a financial services provide that is known for adopting a “no asshole policy’ which guides the way people relate with and respect each other, regardless of their position on the company’s hierarchy.

                          Find out more about careers in Baird

                          11. Quicken Loans, Detroit, Michigan

                            At Quicken Loans, the views and opinions of everyone are respected and heard. The organization is revered for the amount of investment they put in their team members and everyone looks for ways to grow and be better.

                            Find out more about careers in Quicken Loans

                            12. Capital One, Mclean, Florida

                              Capital One has adopted a culture that encourages employees to take risks and try new things. They foster a healthy work-life balance and associates are challenged to live better lives.

                              Advertising

                              Find out more about careers in Capital One

                              13. Cooley LLP, Palo Alto, California

                                Cooley LLP is a law firm known for their ability to care about the company culture and being able to develop a working environment that is empowering and fun. Cooley is known to go for the best when it comes to their employees, regardless of the occasion.

                                Find out more about careers in Cooley LLP

                                14. Southern Ohio Medical Center, Portsmouth, Ohio

                                  The medical center has been known for their propensity to delegate so much to their employees, thereby providing them with the ability to grow and learn on the job. In the end, you get a workplace that is all-engaging and super fun.

                                  Find out more about careers in Southern Ohio Medical Center

                                  15. American Express, New York, New York

                                    American Express is a firm that celebrates wins, no matter how small. Everyone is made to share the same attitude towards service and the people they are to serve, thereby making people care about what they do.

                                    Find out more about careers in American Express

                                    16. Adobe Systems Inc., San Jose, California

                                      The culture at Adobe Systems is one that encourages employees to develop their own ideas and get a strong viewpoint. As opposed to encouraging competition, work-life balance is fostered everywhere here.

                                      Find out more about careers in Adobe Systems Inc.

                                      Advertising

                                      17. The Cheesecake Factory Inc., Calabasas, California

                                        The Cheesecake Factory rewards dedication and hard work. Promotions come pretty easy, and there is always space for guidance to develop your experience and skills.

                                        Find out more about careers in The Cheesecake Factory Inc.

                                        18. Sap America, Newtown Square, Pennsylvania

                                          If you’re looking for a new career path, SAP might be the best bet for you. The company is adept at recognizing value and transferable skills. And you can always look for a new path while maintaining your employment.

                                          Find out more about careers in Sap America

                                          19. NVIDIA Corporation, Santa Clara, California

                                            NVIDIA is known for looking after even the smallest of things. With even a “pets allowed” policy this company accepts you for who you are, and helps you to work within your personality. Advancement is also fostered, and you are able to collaborate effectively.

                                            Find out more about careers in NVIDIA

                                            20. KPMG LLP, New York, New York

                                              Communication and progressive collaboration are the foundation of this company’s workforce treatment. Regardless of the level you are, someone is always at the ready to help and the company rewards extra effort with gratitude.

                                              Find out more about careers in KPMG LLP

                                              All in all, it’s safe to say that you will be able to find somewhere to apply your skills (whatever they are) that is all inclusive and highly accommodative. Companies today are being made to understand how much they can get when they treat their employees right and this has opened the door to an encouraging work environment for all.

                                              Happy job hunting!

                                              Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

                                              Read Next