Today I have spent a lot of time speaking with graduates. I have always found university graduates to be a bit of a conundrum not too dissimilar from seasoned working professionals who seek a change in direction. Whilst they are normally well-mannered, well-skilled and particularly astute, the CV and salary requirements are often sticking points that dictate what is viable.
There are a select group of job hunters who go unnoticed in this instance. These are the people who have worked for a few years (often in their mid-twenties) who seek a change, often they can be found at a crossroads personally and professionally which makes it an incredibly tough challenge.
Expectedly searching for a new career can leave anyone feeling flustered, if you find yourself in this position, what can be done? For many who have graduated or spent considerable time within a line of work it’s reasonable to assume that you’re dynamic, intelligent and when spoken to you come across extremely well.
Foremost it’s important to strategise your next move and ensure that it is meaningful. Simply applying yourself, stripping back your ego (if this is a problem), seeking help even in areas you do not consider to be problematic is a great first move (it is surprising how many view their CV to not be a a founding problem). Additionally consulting recruiters or friends who work within an industry you perceive to be desirable and considering trends are all excellent early moves before making your next move. I am a strong advocate of LinkedIn which in this instance is an excellent tool to gauge the market.
I was once told by someone to; “fake it ‘till you make it” which effectively meant imitate confidence. It’s an important step to improve your own self-belief so that your confidence begins to produce its own success and in turn it will generate real confidence. In essence making your next move will at the very least feel more natural rather than forced.
Personally speaking this has proven to be an effective tool when entering a new industry particularly if the experience or area that was foreign would have been critical to my progression.