New graduate - new job Summer turns most people's thoughts to holidays, but those leaving university or school will be thinking about the big, wide world of work. Whatever job you decide to tackle first, it will prove to be a valuable training ground. Filing or typing memos may not be your idea of a great career move, but be prepared to learn these lowly tasks. You may have a top degree, but no boss will hire you if you can't answer the telephone in a proper manner.
Most graduates and school leavers will be coming into the employment market in the summer, so competition will be tough. Start searching sooner rather than later. You should highlight any work experience you have and say you are keen to learn. It also helps to research the firms and what the job involves. Remember that most junior hiring decisions are made on personality. Firms are looking for reliable, conscientious and punctual employees. While most employers want junior staff to take the initiative and be receptive to their ideas, you must be realistic about time-frames for promotion. And even if you end up spending your career doing something other than your first job, bear in mind that you will learn very useful and often transferable skills in the process.
Aim to be hired by the firm that has the best reputation for employee training. At the interview you should ask about what sort of experience you will gain. The faster you can pick up the experience, the faster you can move up the corporate ladder. A good company will start you in a 'proper' job, which is mixed with technical and personal training. As well as learning computer and other professional skills, good firms also offer training which focuses on interaction with colleagues. In many companies trainees are allotted a 'mentor', a senior member of staff - not their immediate boss - who they can consult on difficult areas. New employees are encouraged to socialize and network with other trainees, which is again another way of...
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