The specifics of what you need to do to succeed in your chosen career will vary, but the broad outlines of what is necessary are the same. Whether you already know exactly what you want to do or you haven’t yet chosen your path among several different ideas, you can start thinking about the steps below that you’ll need to follow.
Even if you think you know exactly what you want to do, it’s a good idea to do some research to make sure you’re headed in the right direction. For example, people often decide to pursue a certain career because they are trying to enhance their lifestyle, or because they have seen a TV show about people who work in that field, but it’s important to make sure that your expectations and aptitude match up to the reality. Try to follow some people on social media and possibly do some informational interviews with people in the field to see what the job is really like.
Education and Training
Identify what kind of education and training you need. Some careers you’ll learn on the job, while others will require years of schooling. If education or training costs money, you may want to look into scholarships among other ways of paying for it. A fast and easy way to find scholarships and start applying in just 30 minutes or less is by using a free search and application platform. Loans, savings and working part-time can also help you pay for school.
Volunteer or Intern
Some people find themselves in a bind in which they can’t get a job without experience, but they are unable to get the experience in the first place. Even if this isn’t the case in your industry, you’ll be much more competitive if you can get some experience in addition to any necessary education and training. Volunteering and interning are two great ways to get that experience. There may be opportunities through your school, or you could contact organizations or companies you are interested in working for directly There are also volunteer databases that can help you find a good match.
Networking is a great way to get to know people in your industry and get a good job. These skills can also help you make friends at a new job once you have been hired somewhere. How networking happens will vary depending on your industry, but it could mean joining an organization or attending conferences or seminars. There are also many opportunities to network online.
Apply Widely, Pay Attention
When you’re ready to get your first job in the field that interests you, apply to as many companies as you can. Your idea here is to get your foot in the door. It’s unlikely you will land in your dream job from the start, and that’s perfectly normal. If your industry is a particularly competitive one, you might have to start in an unrelated position, such as receptionist. Be cheerful and helpful. In these early days, you probably won’t be doing the most interesting tasks. However, this is a great opportunity to familiarize yourself with workplace culture, show that you are a hard worker and really start to learn about your industry. If you’re not happy with your first job, try to give yourself six months to a year before you start looking elsewhere.