Congrats! You’ve finally secured your first job out of college.
Welcome to the working world!
While you likely have not acquired your dream job right out of school, you will inevitably learn invaluable skills and knowledge that will propel you forward in your current job. These are not to be overlooked or taken for granted.
To start your working journey off on the right foot, be sure not to make these common mistakes that millennials often make due to their lack of experience and naivety about how the workforce operates.
Not paying your dues
You were hired to do a job. Unless you are the anomaly starting out with your dream job, you are likely going to have to take on many projects and tasks that you did not anticipate, nor want to do. Grunt work: it’s a rite of passage. Yes, you may have to organize the supply closet, pick up lunches for the afternoon meeting, or set up chairs for a conference, but by putting in 100% effort on all tasks, you are demonstrating that you are a team player and fully capable to handle all projects that are put in front of you. When that dream project comes along, you will be well-positioned to have it assigned to you. Furthermore, you may accidentally discover that you are incredibly passionate about organization, event planning or some other task that began as grunt work.
In this article, Master Life Coach, Brett Baughman, discusses passion: what it really is and how it sets you apart.
Not Raising Your Hand
Raising your hand shows that you have the confidence to speak up when something is amiss and demonstrates your motivation to see the company succeed. Whether it’s raising your hand and ask for help or clarification, volunteering to help to a colleague with a project, or respectfully pointing out gaps, challenges and opportunities that others are overlooking, you are there to support the company. Utilize your voice, your talents and experiences that you uniquely bring to the table.
Not networking enough
The more people you meet the more you are able to learn from and connect with. Get to know not only those in your own organization, but others also in the industry. The more you can learn from others, the more you bring to the table in your own job. Go to company happy hours, follow up with a contact you met at a conference or meeting and ask them to coffee. Humans crave connection and people like to help. Be genuine and honest about getting to know them and learning from them, not what they can do for you. People can see right through your intention, so ensure you’re networking for the right reasons.
Not finding a mentor or coach
Whether it be someone in your company or organization or merely someone in your field, finding a mentor or coach who knows the ropes of the industry can prove to be invaluable. There will be times where you may need to have a difficult conversation, or are contemplating a job switch, when you have someone whom you can seek valuable advice from it will enable you to make better informed decisions.
Not partaking in company perks
Although your starting salary may not be at the level you desire, many companies and organizations offer many great perks and benefits. Health insurance, 401k matching programs, commuter dollars, gym memberships, discounts at local businesses are all great ways to boost. If you’re unsure of what benefits your company or organization offers, ASK. Not utilizing these benefits are essentially dollars down the drain.