How early should I start applying for jobs after I’m done with my studies? This is a pertinent question that often puts us in a quandary of career crossroads. Often we feel the need to unnecessarily compete with our peers in being the first one to land a job after graduation. In that race, however, we miss out of grabbing the right opportunity that will benefit us in the long run!
Honestly, it’s never too late to start hunting for a job. You do not always need to be actively going from pillar to post and just grabbing any opportunity in desperation that comes by. What you need to do is be extremely patient to begin with, mentally assess your situation carefully, and prepare yourself thoroughly before getting in the market with a well-constructed and thought-out resume.
Here are a few handy tips to help you in your quest when you wish you take your own time in starting work.
Start With Yourself
All good career decisions start with introspecting. Ask yourself about the career path that would be best for you. You should be absolutely clear about your interests, for they will decide your longevity in and loyalty to an organization and how substantially you can contribute to its growth. Doing a job half-heartedly just for the sake of being employed or for merely paying your bills will ultimately lead to frustration and a constant feeling of emptiness.
Being aware of your skills is necessary both for planning your professional journey and for excelling at your career.
Simplify Your Journey
If you break down your job-hunting process into small manageable steps, your journey towards finding that perfect job becomes easier. You could do this by setting aside a couple of hours each weekend for making a to-do list. Here are some steps which might help you.
- Look for careers open to graduates from all degree backgrounds.
- Find those you could pursue without your degree subjects.
- Research well on the job descriptions for the profiles you are interested in.
- Get first-hand advice from recent graduates.
Glorify Your Non-Academic Skills
Academic qualifications are important, but they are sometimes not enough in impressing a prospective employer, who might be more interested in your life skills, ability to take initiatives and strategic decisions, presence of mind in critical situations, and so on. It is always a good idea to upgrade your resume by pointing out, for instance, an internship program with an NGO you indulged in, sports and wellness activities you were part of, or cultural activities and inter-school debates. At times, you can also learn effective communication and negotiation skills on the job, for your personality may undergo a positive change with the practical approach of teaching. Therefore, you must be open to all education opportunities, not necessarily traditional classroom teaching.
Become a Part of an Alumni Network
Alumni are very much a part of the huge family of their alma mater, for they always have a unique connection with the university and are likely to be some of its more loyal supporters. It is always necessary to stay connected to gain a wealth of experience and skills from your ex-faculty who are industry experts and may have important information related to education and industry trends from time to time. Through a vast alumni network, you can facilitate exhange with some of its most successful members in leadership roles who can assist you in getting placements, besides enlightening you into becoming a prosperous and well-to-do future global employee.
If reading this makes you feel any better, let us tell you how common it is for students to start panicking once they are through with their final-year papers, for they still haven’t figured out what they wish to do in life. Remember you are not alone, and most of the students are in the same thought process as you. However, you can carve out a productive career when you start planning, irrespective of the life or career stage you find yourself in. Introspect, reflect, list out your professional goals, and do not be apprehensive of experimenting with choices.