So, you just graduated from university or completed your schooling career and unsure about the career track to follow. Do you take the first job that comes along, wait for an opportunity relating to your qualification or do look for ways to do what really matters? Here are a few tips and guidelines that can help you:
Ø Evaluation process – An evaluation process must be carried out but at the age of 17 or 18 you might not know where to start. It involves putting down strengths and weaknesses, personality type, passion, interests, values and things that you can do effortlessly. Sokanu is a free tool that can be helpful in the self-evaluation process however there is no substitute for a career consultant. A career coach will not only help you with a self-evaluation process but will also challenge you to become a better person.
Ø Personal Development and Growth – A job should not be viewed as just a job but a place for personal development and growth. So, for example, if you enjoy working with people and passionate about social impact and eradicating poverty, I would suggest that you volunteer your time at an NGO. Get the feel for the job, see what it involves and at the same time you will be exposed to real life situations.
Ø Career research – once you’ve worked out the above the next step would be to research the industry and such companies. Let’s work on the assumption that you would like to join an NGO; locate the NGOs in your surrounding areas and the ones that would be of interest to you. You could do online searches, word of mouth, informational interviews and attend networking events.
Ø Brand – Use a career coach to help craft your brand and elevator pitch, draw up a resume and letter of motivation – and you’re ready to showcase what you can do. Promote your brand by making some noise on the right platforms such as creating a LinkedIn profile, joining NGO forums, etc. Contribute to these groups by writing short and informative articles on how you would like to help people or just voice your opinions.
Ø Application – Online applications work but I find that networking brings a greater yield. Include job hunting apps on your mobile device so that you will never miss out on job searches and opportunities. “Switch” is a job app that allows you to let a recruiter know that you would be interested in a job without going through the hassle of drafting a letter of motivation. Making personal visits to NGOs and volunteering your time will help achieve desired results.
Ø And finally, don’t allow doubt and fear to hold you back. Never miss an opportunity to show up and share and do what matters the most to you.