Many college students spend months –– if not years –– preparing to land their first “real job” after they graduate. And it’s reasonable for recent graduates to only feel concerned with lining up interviews and meeting the challenges a new job presents. After all, it can be very difficult to get your foot in the door, so to speak. The bad news is that relatively few people are prepared for what they should do next –– that is, after they’ve been at their first job for a while. How do you turn a good start into a thriving career? Today, we’ll endeavor to answer that very question.
Making a few strong business relationships with the right people can set a young professional up for years of success. Even if you don’t love your first job, make an effort to connect on some level with your coworkers. Though this should go without saying, it’s important to always comport yourself with respect and dignity. You never know when you might end up collaborating with an old contact –– so avoid burning bridges at all costs!
Prioritize Your Career Goals
What constitutes “success” for one person might resemble another person’s worst nightmare. As such, it’s important to take time to determine what you really want from a career. Do you care more about a high salary, or the ability to take time off at a moment’s notice? Are you willing to relocate for a job or have you settled in your current city? These are the kind of questions you should be asking yourself early on.
Don’t Get Too Comfortable
Some professionals absolutely love their first job out of college and find that they want to work there for many years in the future. However, a large portion of millennials plan to leave their current job within the next five years. Switching jobs and career paths is becoming the norm for modern workers, so don’t assume that you’ll always be able to rely on your current position.
For some people, their education officially ends the day they graduate college. These folks have no interest in developing new skills or picking up new strands of knowledge. However, the best professionals never really stop learning. Rather, they’re always inquiring about how things work or why business is conducted in a certain way. It doesn’t matter if you’re asking your boss about a piece of specific equipment like a red black tube or questioning the composition of a digital advertisement, progressive pros always want to learn more. Remember, knowledge is not a means to an end, but its own reward. Keep asking questions and you’ll be sure to go far!