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5 Things We Wish We Knew Before Starting Our Careers

5 Things We Wish We Knew Before Starting Our Careers
From Recruiter - July 22, 2016

1. Its Okay to Look for Work Outside Your Field of Study

No one told me this, but I learned it quickly in my career: It is okay to pursue a job that you didnt specifically go to school to study. I was a nursing major, but needed a part-time job while I was in school. My temp position at a tech company, Edgenet, seemed like a strange job to accept at the time. But I loved the company, the people, and the work there so much that 11 years later Im still with the firm.

Because of that experience, I encourage young job seekers not to fixate on the perfect position you think you need nowthe one you went to school for. Instead, consider the type of organization you want to work for and the kind of environment you want to work in. Do you thrive in a fast-paced office? Do you like structure? Do you want a close-knit community? If you find the right environment, the right job will come.

Also, the saying Its not what you know, its who you know is an adage for a reason. I wouldnt have known about the position at Edgenet while in school if I didnt have a connection who pointed me to the opening. Network as early and as often as you possibly can.

Dana Becker, Edgenet

2. You Dont Have to Settle for Your First Job Offer

It is really exciting to receive an offer, but you have to be realistic with yourself. You dont have to absolutely love every part of your first job, but its important to understand that you will spend most of your week there.

When you didnt like a class you were taking in college, you could drop it in the first few weeks with no consequences. With your first job, you have to feel confident that you can manage a full day of doing this job five days a week. I have seen many friends realize the job they committed to was making them miserable. Many of them werent even able to make it through a full year at their first jobs. But they accepted the jobs because it was convenient and helped lower the stress of graduating. Really take the time to think about whether or not the job youve been offered is the right fit for you. Trust me, working somewhere that you dont dread going to every day is worth waiting for.

Emily Hagen, Hub Recruiting

Mark Says

Find a way to do somethinganythingthat you truly enjoy and that might pave the way to another career or job. Consider doing something you would love to do but never thought you couldand then volunteer to learn more about it.

3. Experience Is Everything

Even though spending your time watching Netflix eight hours a day in college sounds like fun, youre wasting your time and life away. If I could tell my freshman self anything, it would be to get involved in the community. Find a nonprofit you can spend your time with and build your professionalism, even if its not related to your field. Who knowsyou might change your major or career path like I did.

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