Defining your career – Part 1: Setting career goals

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According to captains of industry, there are three distinct chapters of a person’s career: eras in a life well-lived, where an individual can invent and reinvent themselves in different, productive ways. Your career is unique: but many start the same way. Let’s go from the beginning.

You have earned your degree or diploma, so it’s time to put it to use and start your career. The time after you graduate college is a major transition period: From a sheltered life, from studying all your life, you are now expected to venture to the world of professionals where you will be responsible for paying your bills and managing your money and expenses.

This is the first stage of your career, where you try to be as independent as you can, gain experiences, and develop skill sets that will make you an asset to the company that you are applying to. The first stage of your career is where you also build relationships, and build a network that can benefit you later on.

What are the things you should do as you enter the first chapter of your career? Below are some helpful tips from experts, based on experience.


Growth opportunity

When you are offered an opportunity, do not let your emotions get the best of you. Sometimes, higher pay in a new locale may indicate a higher cost of living, leaving you with a smaller savings. Balance the numbers, talk to people, and be on the lookout for opportunities that may come your way. but discern carefully if that is, in fact, the best move for your career. Evaluate and create a table of pros and cons that can help you decide.


When to Start Saving

Sometimes, it’s easy to get overwhelmed with the fact that you are earning, and that you can buy whatever you want without asking anyone for money. Do not rely on you being young and having more time to save: Save as early as you can, and you will be thankful later. Do not spend more than you earn, or you’ll regret it.


Career match

If you feel that you are stuck in a job that you do not like or is not compatible with your skills, by all means find something else. Do not grow old in a job that you do not like. Every day will be torture. If you feel that you deserve better, find somewhere else to work where you will be appreciated.


First impressions last

Make a good impression whenever you are meeting potential employers or recruiters. Dress well and dress properly.


Do not sell yourself short

You know what you can do, and you know where you stand with your talents and skills. Do not undermine yourself or let others take advantage of you. Doing that will make you settle for less than what you deserve and that is not a good sign.


Take care of your health

While you are still young, take care of your health. Do not abuse your health, because it will get back at you when you grow older. Get enough rest and eat a healthy diet.


Develop necessary skills

We have established that the first chapter of your career is where you build your skills and experiences. These are some of the skills that are worth developing as you enter the world of professionals.


More listening

There are people who think that they can talk their way to success. While sharing what you know is important, listening can give you the advantage of seeing those actions and expressions put into words. Listening is an essential skill that not everyone is capable of, and once you learn how to listen, your work performance will change for the better. You will also be able to build good relationships with others.


Problem solving Skills

Problems come up daily, and sometimes, it’s not easy to keep your cool. Complaining constantly will not solve the problems at all: As a matter of fact, it can add stress to everybody else in the workplace. Complaining accomplishes nothing. Instead, focus on the problem at hand and find a solution for it.


Time management skills

As a professional, you are going to be very busy. As you try to fit your schedules in a day, you have to learn how to manage your time. It is one of the most competitive skills that you can possess and is a beneficial one to master early on.


Critical thinking skills

During decision making, taking a fast approach is tempting, as there may be plenty of other work at hand. Haste makes waste. But that doesn’t mean that you have to spend an entire day just deciding about one thing. There will be countless opportunities to develop critical thinking skills by examining every option and, in the end, choosing the best.

If you practice these skills early on, you will go a long way in your career and you can be an asset to your company. Stay tuned, as Jobhatch travels down the timeline of your career, and how best to maximize it.

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Amos Tay

Amos Tay

I have over 10 years’ experience in the Logistics and Transportation industry working both as an in-house HR professional as well as an external recruiter. I have a Gallup CliftonStrength certified coach. Connect with me for your next Logistics & Supply Chain hiring role.

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