Entry Level Jobs Are More Than Pit Stops
I think it’s important that new grads get all the help and advice they can to successfully start their careers. And I’ve devoted several blogs lately to this audience. At the risk of belaboring the subject, I want to offer just a bit more guidance to 2014 graduates about maximizing the value of an internship or an entry-level job.
A lot of new grads think internships and entry-level jobs are just pit stops. But if you do it right, they can be springboards to success. Here are some of my suggestions to maximize an entry-level job
Look around for people you can use as mentors. Begin building relationships with them, watch what they do and pattern your actions after theirs. Join professional clubs and associations. They’re great places to network and even greater places to find wonderful mentors.
Soak everything in like a sponge. Pay attention to each facet of your job and become a subject matter expert.
Offer your ideas carefully. Don’t be afraid to offer ideas when you can, but be sure to show respect for the knowledge of your coworkers, especially those who have been around for a long time.
Approach every task with 100% commitment. Even “worm jobs” are worth doing well. You may find them boring and monotonous but don’t let this be obvious to others. Remember, you can learn something from every experience and entry-level jobs are great for experience.
Take and give credit as due. Take credit for your work and your contributions but don’t take credit for what others do or ideas they have shared with you. Demonstrating integrity, unity and a willingness to let others shine is important to make yourself stand out.
Give back. It’s great to get help from people you work with and people you network with, but it’s just as important to do what you can to help them. Remember, all relationships are two-way streets and if you’re not willing to help others, pretty soon you’ll find yourself traveling alone.
Don’t get too comfortable. When things are going just the way you want and you’re feeling really successful, don’t get too comfortable. Resting on your accomplishments can mean you’ve stopped moving forward. You have to keep pushing ahead and looking for new challenges if you want to continue growing in your career.
Be polite and considerate of others. Say “thank you” and offer to help out when you can. Good manners never go out of style and people will remember the way you treated them.
Remember: An entry-Level job is your first stepping stone to success. Make it work for you!
Sue Montgomery is a Certified Professional Resume Writer & Career Coach with 20+ years of experience creating resumes, cover letters and other tools that market people for the jobs they want. Sue is founder and president of Resume Plus.