The article notes that “New Orleans is a rapidly growing hub for creative careers.” It also notes that we have affordable rent, amazing cuisine, and low unemployment. So, it seems, you are starting out with an advantage. You still face challenges. Below are a few tips for navigating the move from college into the working world.
Think of yourself as a lifelong learner. As you move through internships and positions, think of each as an experience from which you can learn valuable skills. Don’t stop learning! Take classes, read journals, and join seminars. The more you learn about the subjects that interest you, the more you have to offer in your career and in your life. Travel can also be an excellent way to build experience, bolstering your cultural capital and awareness. It may seem trivial, but when all other things are equal, this added dimension can mean the difference between being offered a great position and missing out on it.
Work in your field, even if you cannot find the ideal position. Don’t settle for a job that will pay the bills but will leave you feeling uninspired. You’ll have a much better chance of making an impact and getting noticed by the right people if you are in the field you’re passionate about. Jump in with both feet, and prove yourself right away, if you do, doors will eventually open for you!
If we have learned anything about the difference between Millennials and Gen Xers & Baby Boomers, it is that younger people are more reliant on technology which can cause communications glitches with older colleagues. Make eye contact, pick up the phone from time-to-time, or meet in person. You will never be sorry for taking the time to cultivate an authentic relationship with a colleague. These bonds are what make people want to offer you help, mentorship, and even opportunities later in your career. Additionally, if you have time and inclination, you should find a mentor who is living the kind of life you’d love to live. Spending time with a seasoned professional will provide you with invaluable insights into the career you desire. Don’t be afraid to accept wisdom from those who have come before. Your ideas may be innovative and exciting, but the wisdom of those who have been where you want to be can provide you with information that can help you refine and polish your innovative ideas turning them into awesome solutions. Remember that there is a time for talking and time for listening.