Instructors: Entry-level jobs can be a big letdown, especially for millennials, who are used to getting what they want immediately. Those of us who have survived the boredom, low pay, and long hours of a first job know that it gets better. Share these tips about getting the most out of a first job with your students.
Tip 1: Be patient. As a first-time employee, you cannot expect instant gratification on your first job. If you feel as though your abilities are being ignored, channel your frustration into a learning opportunity and create your own training and development. You’ll be better prepared for the next job!
Tip 2: Find a mentor. Whether a colleague or someone outside the organization, mentors can provide useful support and advice. A mentor inside a firm can serve as a role model as well as put in a good word for you. Someone outside the company can help guide you and explain the industry or basic workplace etiquette.
Tip 3: Network regularly. Start by making connections with coworkers. You’ll find that more senior colleagues chat about their roles and experiences and can be a valuable source for learning about future opportunities. Then attend professional networking events, which are key to your growth within a field. Try to go to at least one event a month.
Tip 4: Learn about your benefits. Vacation days, sick leave, retirement funds, and health insurance can be confusing. Make a point to read the fine print about your benefits and don’t be afraid to ask questions.
- What does paying your dues mean? How might paying your dues play out in a new job?
- How might a new staff member’s complaints about being underutilized be seen by those with more seniority?
- What kind of support might a mentor provide to someone in an entry-level job? How might a new hire go about finding a mentor?