Congratulations, new grads; you did it!
I hope you are enjoying a much-needed break between college and a whole new world of work, and living it up in style by attending concerts, traveling or simply catching up with friends. While this is an exciting time for you, I’m sure you are also anxiously looking forward to this new chapter of life—kicking off your career.
As you put into practice all the things you’ve learned along the way, here are five tips that apply to all careers at all levels:
Sharpen your “soft” skills.
Communication, emotional intelligence, critical thinking and creativity are some of the hottest soft skills in the job market today. In fact, they are just as important as technical skills and experience. If you look around, a myriad of courses, trainings and articles can help you understand these skills and how you can apply them effectively.
Benefits? You will see a world of difference in the way you collaborate, carry yourself in the workplace, assess a critical business situation and more. If you’re open to new perspectives and self-awareness, then you’re in it to win it.
Be agile and adapt.
Change is the new constant. Once you have your foot in the door, be prepared to learn new skills to better adapt to different languages, products, processes and technologies.
There is simply no question of thinking, “Oh, I can’t do this.” You should be flexible and prepared to seize every new opportunity, even if you are asked to work from a different location or to relocate altogether. Being adaptable goes a long way.
Be prepared to “learn, unlearn and relearn”. That is the key to success in the new VUCA (volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous) world.
Know what you want.
This is a timeless piece of career advice: Pursue a job you are most passionate about. You’ll never have a boring day at work if love what you do and know how to make the most of it.
Many times, you may feel limited to the field your degree is in. But nothing should stop you from choosing another career path if that truly gets your adrenaline pumping.
There are many success stories where people have pursued their passion leaving behind the conventional routes to get to their goals. It helps to be clear on your medium and long-term goals.
So what if you stumble?
While it may seem like a big deal, it’s not the end of the world if you don’t get hired after interviewing for a job. But I encourage you to take feedback from your interviewer and assess what didn’t go well. For example, if you struggled with articulating your thoughts, then spend a little more time on brushing up on your verbal communication skills.
You can also take help from faculty members or fellow students. This may be a good time to hit the pause button and pursue an internship or a summer program.
Above all, be a good person.
Your work ethics, sincerity and authenticity will set the tone for your professional journey. Approach life and work with the utmost integrity and respect for others.
Abdul Kalam’s golden words echo in my mind: “It is very easy to defeat someone, but it is very hard to win someone.” And I couldn’t agree more.
Stay fearless and adventurous in your career journey. Make mistakes and learn from them. Crave creativity and show the world that you’re hungry for more—and remember to treat every opportunity like it may be the last.
Ready to change the world? Find your next career opportunity with Accenture today.
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