More often than not, most of those graduating from university began their course with a clear career path in mind – that dictated the choice of course, their final year project subject and in some cases their work placement.
But for some, that next step is not clear at all – having a plan for when you leave university is the best way to get ahead in the job hunting stakes, but if you are unsure of where your career path will take you, here are our top tips to help you plan your next move.
It’s all about you – REMEMBER this is your post university life; where you head on your career path needs to fulfil your goals in life professionally so it’s important that YOU know what YOU want. This is something only you can decide, so sit down with a cup of tea, a piece of paper and a pen and ask yourself; what are you looking for in a job? What is important to you – the financial reward, the career prospects or that you are doing something you love? What are your interests and values?
Forward think – You may find that getting a post university job straight away is not right for you, you may want to join a graduate scheme, an internship in an industry that interests you , continue training or take a gap year – but REMEMBER it’s not just your immediate future you need to think of, where do you want to be in a year’s time, three years, five even? Make a plan of how you want your professional life to develop over the coming years – you will often be asked such a thing in an interview situation, so it is good practice to have the answer in mind now.
Narrow down your options – Once you are clear on what YOU want from your career and how the next few years will look, you will find that this will effect the jobs you apply for, the companies you join, and where your professional life starts and takes you. That said; if you make a choice that turns out not to be right for you it is not the end of the world – just sit down and start again.
Stay Calm – You may have left it a little late to look into the next step, and the responsibility of making these life changing decisions can be overwhelming but it is important not to panic as it’s never too late to start your job search on a career path that is right for you. Be patient, you may not get that perfect job immediately and it can take time – take heed however DON’T narrow down your career choices so much that you are constantly holding out for that perfect job opportunity and nothing comes your way.
As with any job hunter starting their job search; graduates can often fall into the job hunting pitfalls; there is no one sure way of getting that perfect career – planning, preparation and seizing the day are often big factors in your career choices. REMEMBER hard work and drive make your career a success – what are you waiting for?