The millennial workforce is a winding maze that we are only just learning how to navigate.
With endless possibilities to explore, it makes sense to be seeking guidance when it comes to your professional career. Let us be your temporary mentor and lend you some much sought-after advice.
1. Do Your Research
If you’re dreaming of a career that gives as much as it takes, never stop learning.
A rewarding job will push you to challenge yourself in ways essential to interpersonal as well as professional growth. Learn to instill in yourself a drive to do more with what you know. This drive will see its way through your entire career in high places, so long as you maintain it.
Do your research about a company you’re interested in to get the right idea of their core beliefs, ethics, and values and how they intersect with yours. Not only will your prospective employer be impressed by your input at the interview, but it will make you better equipped at transferring seamlessly into your new role.
As millennials, Don’t be satisfied with what you already know – strive to know more, do more. This thirst for knowledge will drive you to be successful in any endeavor you happen to choose.
2. Discover What You Love to Do–and Do It Well
You’ve heard it before: “do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.” Turns out, that’s actually pretty bad advice.
I prefer the Katherine Whitehorn quote, “Find out what you like doing best, and get someone to pay you for doing it.”
Ask yourself the tough questions for some real truths: in what ways do you want to benefit from while also benefiting the workplace?
Find what you’re passionate about while keeping in mind what areas you’re skilled and have experience in. Once you learn where the two intersect, you’ll have that much more clarity on your ambitions.
Not only should you explore different fields in this process, but you should also think outside of the box, too. Luckily, we live in an age where we’re never short of innovative and fresh opportunities, so don’t be afraid of branching out.
Maybe a remote job, like a staff copywriter, would benefit your schedule while still allowing you to grow within a team and extend your professional experience as a writer. There is no right or wrong when it comes to doing what you love, on your own terms.
3. Make Your Resume Stand Out
In the words of Will Rogers, you will never get a second chance to make a first impression, so the same applies to your resume. In fact, resume building is in itself, it’s very own skill – and you, too, can master it by keeping a few things in mind.
When you explore different job positions, make sure you tailor your resume to match what the company is looking for. Highlighting your professional skills and experience that coincides with what they have in mind will make you stand out for an interview.
Since a resume is typically recommended to be only about one page, not being able to fit in the wide scope of your experience is an obstacle many faces. This is when it becomes useful to put a spotlight on previous positions that would make you a good candidate for the prospective role.
When it comes to aesthetics, there are a number of useful graphic design tools – like Canva – that can help you make your resume truly feel like you. Avoid anything that may seem too cluttered or busy and instead opts for clean and organized.
Paying attention to these little details will communicate the fact that you have a keen eye in the workplace, as well. Employers gravitate towards these personal twists when it comes to potential hires, so don’t be afraid to stand out.
4. Talk to Anyone and Everyone
If there’s anything to take away here for millennials: find ways to talk to someone who has the position you dream about. Those who have already climbed their way up the ladder of success likely have a thing or two to tell you about how they got there.
Take any chance to introduce yourself – the larger your network, the larger your scope of opportunities.
Caught in an elevator with the CEO? Muse has some conversation starters that will help you break the ice and earn your keep in the inner circle. The more you put yourself out there, the more you pave the way for future growth and possibilities.
Sooner or later, while navigating the world wide web of networking, you will realize the importance of finding a mentor. Although you may find yourself with open doors, it is up to you to decide what to do with them.
Make a plan to find a potential mentor who can help you get better at your craft. Olympia LePoint, the award-winning NASA rocket scientist, was recently asked if she had any advice for millennials on starting a career: “Your job is to invent—that is to take an idea and birth it into reality”.
The only way that millennials can do this is to find mentors willing to you how to do things. You must learn the history of how things were done, and you must execute ideas continually to become an expert.
And you must find people who are willing to show you the steps of how to execute tasks.
You can find a parent, a teacher, a friend, a co-worker, a friend of a friend, a professional coach. There are tons of people who are looking for you to share their knowledge.”
If there’s anyone to take career advice from, it’s Steve Jobs, who firmly believed: “the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle.”
By incorporating these tips into your job search, you’ll find it that much more rewarding of a journey. Never be afraid to ask questions, meet someone new, or take a risk. The key to success is usually found in not only being good at what you do but the way that you do it.