What is your current frame of mind now that you are about to finish school and are about to find yourself a career? Are you scared? Anxious? Excited? However you’re feeling, take notes and let us help you start the kind of success you desire.
Start composing your CV if you haven’t started writing it yet.
And constantly add to it. What are your skills that would translate to skills needed in the workplace? Have you led teams in your organization in College? Aside from your internship, have you volunteered to work for an NGO even just to push papers? Do you have interests and projects in Art? Music? Do you design websites? Have you coded / programmed apps?
All of the things that represent you could and would help in translating your best self to the person who is going to screen your CV. As newly grads, you have little to no experience hence activities that could beef up your CV will help. Also, preparing an accompanying covering email to your application would let you control how you will be perceived per application. Visit How To Write Your CV, should you need more detailed help on this.
Practicing your interview experience.
List questions you’d think will be asked and answer those questions. Improve as you answer the same questions. How do you think you’d come across if Answer A was your response compared to Answer B. What answers would be more appropriate if the company you’re applying for is traditional vs. a start-up.
Challenge yourself with difficult questions. If you do not know how to answer a particular question, do your research. Google common interview questions and answers or ask experts – ask me. If you feel you cannot be honest with yourself with the kind of answers you give yourself, try practicing with a friend. Here are Top Interview Questions And How to Answer Them.
Practice your body language.
According to Albert Mehrabian’s Rule of Personal Communication, ninety-three percent of communication is non-verbal (55% body language and 38% tone of voice) so ensure you are conveying energy, enthusiasm and interest in the interview with your relaxed but confident posture. You may have the right answers to the questions posed but you may not be expressing it across rightly.
Know the type of industry you want to get into.
Arm yourself with a lot of information you understand and want to further know more about. Assess your reasons why you’d like to work within a certain industry – and also why that particular role. Don’t just consider a job because your parents / friends / relatives are doing the same. You should absolutely try to know more about different industries, including other people’s, but, be armed with the information you could use to understand the work a role entails. Would you like to be an in-house Accountant or Engineer or work for a Practice firm serving different clients? A private Pilot or a Pilot on commercial flights. Would you like to sell products or services? Do not only rely on your own understanding of new information presented to you. Do your extensive research. Ask around.
Know the different departments of a company.
Know their roles and relationships with each other and know the type of work you would want to do.
There are different departments / areas / roles in a company and each play a part and contribute to the success of the company. Understanding how everyone works will give you an idea of where you want to contribute in. Your internships should have taught you this. If not (that’s sad) ask someone who’s working. And it would be interesting! What would definitely come out of conversations about other people’s jobs are the politics behind work communication, which is normal and shouldn’t care anyone. Understanding that things at work will not be as straight-forward as College was, is important. It’s not going to be easy but it’s not as hard as well.
All in all, it’s exciting times! Applying yourself along with all the things you have learned in school to contribute to an organization should be the definition of working. To some it is the definition, and still is, but to others it is just a means to an end but work experiences differ. Just remember that learning didn’t stop when you graduated, or wouldn’t stop when you graduate. Every day at work is an experience that should be embraced and learned from. You now have real effect on others, on groups of people, in the society. You are now depended upon. That’s huge and it should be seen as a positive because you are useful to the world through a little role at the beginning that matters in the greater scheme of things. Prepare, be informed and be excited. Greater things are ahead!