How to Prepare for Your Career After Graduation

Photo by Joshua Mcknight. Pexels.

Life after graduation is daunting. It forces graduates to face the “real world”—the world of careers, taxes, and beyond. This is why many graduates feel the post-university blues, which may involve experiencing stress or anxiety. Leaving university is a big change, making graduates question their preparedness for professional life—and especially their careers. If you feel the same, here are a few ways to prepare for life after graduation.

Create a professional social media presence

Social media has gone beyond providing entertainment. It’s also a place to showcase professional achievements through networking sites like LinkedIn. These are doors to job opportunities because they serve as virtual CVs for employers to find potential candidates. This is why graduates who want to land a job must impress potential employers—even over the internet.

To effectively curate your CV, highlight your best qualities, skills, and work, when crafting your professional social media presence. For instance, you can create a LinkedIn profile and regularly update it with any new skills and experiences you gain. You can also post about these experiences to share them with fellow professionals. Doing so increases the chances of employers finding you through the internet and getting an offer.

Polish your interview skills

Interviews are a given when job-hunting. Still, it’s more than just answering questions. Your answers and overall attitude can make or break an interviewer’s decision to hire you, as these exhibit your potential. Thus, it’s vital to polish your interview skills. One way to ensure success in an interview is to ask questions. This impresses the recruiter as it shows you are genuinely interested in the position. It also allows you to learn more about the company or the job you’re applying for.

You can ask the interviewer’s experience with the company thus far or something about the company’s values. Another skill to touch up on is speaking in a clear and precise manner. This communicates confidence and professionalism, which recruiters look for in potential employees. Polishing your skills assures the best performance during interviews.

Build a network

Networking lets you meet potential business partners, employers, and industry acquaintances. Your professional relationships with these people contribute to your career progress, as they can work with you, give you advice, or connect you to your dream job.

You can start building your network by attending affairs like alumni networking events, industry conferences, and career fairs. Bring business cards with you to hand out to people you meet. Start conversations by introducing yourself, then talk about a topic that interests you, such as recent industry trends. It may not be visible at present, but your network will be your support group in your professional life.

It’s normal to feel unqualified for jobs as a new graduate. Today’s world is very competitive, especially with LinkedIn reporting that around 35% of entry-level positions require years of work experience or other skills—something new graduates may lack.

 

Upskill yourself

Fortunately, one thing can help: upskilling. This will give you the necessary skills—and more—to qualify for positions. It can even get you a higher salary when employers see your unique skills and want to secure you as their employee. You can upskill in several ways, such as by taking internships and short courses. Internships give you on-hand experience in the industry, while courses teach you new skills and knowledge. This way, you’ll feel more confident when applying for jobs and increase your chances of employment.

Feeling anxious as a new graduate is normal. Keep our tips in mind to feel more confident and prepared for your career after graduation.

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