Best Advice for the College Graduate

Graduating college and getting in to the “real world” can be an exciting prospect, but it can also be extremely overwhelming and daunting, and many college students are not prepared for the true reality of life outside the classroom. As scary as it is to think about going out and living in a world without professors and parents for guidance, try not to get discouraged!

Many college graduates think after they leave school, especially if they have an “in demand” degree, such as Accounting or Human Resources, that finding a job will be an easy task. Unfortunately, it does not happen that way and many become discouraged upon realizing that they are not as in demand as they had thought. It takes time to find the right fit in the job market, especially in today’s economy where so many employers are laying people off as opposed to hiring new employees. However, with diligence and patience, the right job will come along. Some college grads might have to temp or work hourly wage jobs in the mean time, but eventually the education and degree will pay off

Any college grad looking for a job should have a good resume that really showcases his/her skills. If they have never worked in their field, use volunteer and internship work on the resume and be sure to highlight school accomplishments. Companies know college grads are not going to have extensive resumes with years of experience but for the most part, some work in the field of study was done, even if the individual was not paid, and that should be listed on the resume.

Take time while looking for a job. Don’t make a hasty decision to work for a company without knowing anything about the company, just because they have expressed interest. If the individual has a specific company they are interested in, don’t give up that hope. Companies are often looking for talented individuals with college degrees to bring on to their teams. If it doesn’t happen right away, work for a temp agency for a while. Not only will it help with brining in income while looking for the right job, but the agency might be able to help the job seeker find that much sought after position. On the flip side, though, don’t keep passing up jobs in hopes of getting “the perfect job”. Sometimes sacrifices have to be made in order to gain experience.

Be careful when setting salary expectations. Don’t set them too low or too high. Do some research and see what an entry level position in the field of choice demands in salary. The job seeker should not sell themselves short just because of lack of experience but should not be greedy either. If hired and the job is preformed well, the salary will catch up to the skills of the individual quickly enough.

It can be discouraging looking for a job, especially during a down economy, as has been the case for the last several years. There are many talented, hard working, qualified individuals out there vying for the same job positions and not everyone can find thier dream job immediately. But, there will always be organizations looking for new talents. Don’t give up hope if it doesn’t happen as quickly as expected. The job seeker will be much happier in the long run if time is taken searching for the job and the company that will satisfy them. Be flexible but don’t settle and eventually the right fit will present itself.