While you may have taken a variety of classes in high school or college, most probably didn't focus on dedicated career advice. It can be a challenging experience for a new graduate to navigate the workplace and try to learn everything at the same time. Here is one important strategy that will get you on the right path towards your career goals:
Find a Mentor
As you graduate and enter the professional arena, it can be intimidating to work alongside experienced professionals and you might have many doubts about your abilities. This is where mentorship plays a key role in developing your confidence and eliminating fear.
A mentor should be a good listener and a problem solver. A great advisor gives you the opportunity to correct your mistakes by asking open-ended and thoughtful questions. A good mentor guides you to think about the bigger picture, prods you to get out of your comfort zone, and take up a challenge. They can be your boss, a colleague, or another professional from your field. Find out more about how to find a mentor here. Although a healthy relationship with your mentor is encouraged, be mindful of their biases and ego as you can find yourself being misguided.
The mentor can further hone the skills of a mentee by advising these strategies to advance their careers and improve their skills and confidence:
Gain Experience Across Multiple Areas of Practice
When you start out working, do not commit to one field. Keep an open mind, take different assignments, and get a feel for new areas. Consider short term assignments to get exposure to working in different settings.
You will have a clear idea of where your expertise lies and which settings and functions you enjoy the most. Start job sharing in those areas if possible, gain experience, and begin exploring leadership opportunities. Your experience across board will give you the necessary skills to excel in your work and become highly noticeable.
Work Smart and be Efficient
Be efficient in your work and keep up your deadlines. Also, always ask for help when needed. Spending hours trying to problem solve on your own will lead to loss of time. Learn to be a team player and reach out without hesitation. Collaboration and delegation are key skills that will lead you to take on more responsibility and leadership roles in the future. Every job comes with mundane tasks like completing lots of paperwork, so make sure you have a good proficiency in Word and Excel so you are not struggling to keep up. Be available to learn on the job and attend workshops to improve and acquire cross skills to achieve proficiency. Volunteer for company outreach programs for continued networking.
These strategies will assist in building lifelong foundations for your career life. They will make you confident in the decisions you make on the daily basis and for the future.
To learn more about this and related topics, visit the Career Advice section of our blog.
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