If you’ve recently graduated from high school or college, trying to start your career can feel intimidating. Constant news reports on unemployment numbers can make it feel even scarier. But everyone has to start somewhere! Here are a few things you can do to help get your career started.
Take an honest look at yourself.
Start by making two lists. First, make a list of your skills. You’re not showing this list to anyone, so don’t exaggerate, and don’t list skills that you don’t have. Now make a list of the skills that are needed for the job (or jobs) you want. Compare the lists to find the areas you can work on. You can improve a skill you’re not fully comfortable with, or build a skill that you’re missing.
Set career-related goals.
While deciding what field you want to go into is a big step, it’s not a goal. Goals need to be specific and measurable. When you’re just starting out, it can be helpful to set daily goals. For example, “Today, I will apply to three jobs that interest me,” or, “Today, I will call Key Resource Group and find out how they can help me.” It can also be helpful to set longer-term goals like, “This year I will meet with one person from my network every month.” Write down your goals as you go along so you can take time to review your progress later.
When you’re unemployed, it can be tempting to fill your hours between job hunting with television or the Internet, but resist that urge. Using your free time constructively can propel your career forward. Start networking. Keep in touch with teachers, professors, and classmates, and see if there are local networking groups that specialize in your field. Volunteering is also a great way to use your free time. Not only does it look great on a resume, but it gives you an opportunity to use your skills and keep them from getting rusty.
These are just a few of the things that you can do to kick start your career. For more ideas, contact a staffing specialist at Key Resource Group. We’re one of the fastest-growing businesses in the U.S., and we can help place you in a job you’ll love.