Transition from College to Workforce:What You Don’t Do Can Help You

Congratulations!  You have studied hard and graduated with all the necessary qualifications in hand.  Now it is time to get out in the real world and work.  There is seemingly no end to the amount of advice you may encounter along the way.  Case in point, a recent Lifehack article illustrates how successful people behave differently than the average Joe.  According to the article, successful people show commitment, persistency and responsibility.  They work hard, look up to and learn from others and show humility by learning from their mistakes.  Not exactly rocket science is it?  However, based on behaviors that are prevalent in most workplaces, easier said than done. 

A Google search will provide you with an endless diatribe on top traits of successful people and all that you “should do” to be successful on the job.  However, at Gradcast we take a slightly different view.  Sometimes what you don’t do is just as important as the things you do.  Let this be a lesson in what not to do as you transition from college to the workforce. .

Contrary to popular belief, being a “Yes Man” is never a good idea.  Today’s employers are looking for people who can think outside the box and develop new ways to get the job done.  Innovators are far more valued than proverbial brown-nosers.  If you think getting cosy with your boss and agreeing with everything he or she says is an effective job strategy, think again.

Do not act like a know it all.  While completing your education is an impressive achievement, it is not the end all and be all.  In fact, because you spent so much time in school, you may have little, if any, work experience.  Therefore, exhibiting an eager attitude and willingness to learn will fare you far better in the eyes of your employer and the colleagues who have been on the job longer than you.

To expand on the above theme, do not confuse cockiness and confidence.  You are no better than anyone else. The 40 year old single mother may not have the education that you do, but she probably has a wealth of life experience.  The 20 year company man may seem like a dinosaur with antiquated ideas, but he probably knows more about the business than anyone in the building and you would do well to learn from him whatever you can. 

Stop complaining about the slackers.  There will always be people who seemingly get away with murder at the workplace.  You know who they are, the ones who are constantly “doing” things but never actually getting anything done.  Everyone else knows who they are too so there is absolutely no point wasting your time talking about them.

Never come to work when you are sick.  Nobody wants your germs and they will not appreciate your sharing them.  The company isn’t going to fold if you aren’t there for a couple days.  Stay home, take care of yourself and get well. 

Do not underestimate the power of a positive attitude.  It sounds corny and cliché, but it is a fact that positivity breeds success.  When you believe in yourself, people believe in you.  When you believe in others, they want to be a success.  “Gosh, I really don’t think I can do this,” said no successful entrepreneur or CEO, ever.

Remember, you will be spending a majority of your time in the workplace so you owe it to yourself to make the best of it.  Contact us   for pertinent, practical and positive career guidance.

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