I’ve penned several notes about work post graduation but just have not gotten down to compiling them into a sensible post on the blog until now. I’m wary about posting things too personal on the internet in general, lest I look back in the future and cringe at my past self. A bigger reason is of course I worry, tho I’d like to think them as unfounded, about people reading what I write and judging me for it. Which leads me to digress – why am I, or I believe why are we humans so fearful for others’ judgement on us? It isn’t to say that others’ opinions of us will make us more or less of whom we already are, if that makes sense to you.
So anyway, lengthy introduction aside, if I have not already bored you away, here goes my list of 3 things no one told you before graduation:
1. Be certain of uncertainty.
You know how in school we always have that next thing to look forward to? The next semester, the next exam, the next academic year, the next grade, etc.
But when you come to the working world you’ll find that things aren’t as clear cut. There isn’t (for most people or for me at least) a certain bar that you need to meet and pass before you rise up and go on to the next stage or level. Sure, some routes are tried and tested, perhaps you have a manager above you and you have an idea of how long you’ve got to work before you’ll rise to his level. But in the world of business (yes, so if you belong to the public sector this might not be that relevant to you), there is no guarantee. In worse case scenarios the company might go down but in the best case scenarios you might be promoted and be placed in higher position/s that comes with responsibilities perhaps more than you can manage.
2. If you have a choice with whom you can work with, then pick people you’re comfortable with.
Some of you reading this might go, “Jia En/Ena, isn’t that a “duh/ needless to state opinion” ? Yes, to many it’s common sense, but sometimes in the hustle and bustle and the thick of working life, we forget things. We think that just cause we have goals to meet and benefits to gain from another party, we simply have to suck it up and work with people are simply plain bad. That’s not true.
To elaborate, I’d like to humbly suggest for you to choose to work with accountable and responsible people. If you’re the person in charge, then you’d better be accountable and responsible. Choose to work with people you like and likes you back. I can’t emphasize enough how this mutual good feeling of the other party contributes to the success of a project.
3. Chances are, you’re the only one who feels for your dreams and ambitions and the only one responsible to make them come true.
Yes, keeping in line with the idealistic self in me, and thankfully still am at the young but not so tender age of 23, I still believe in having dreams and ambitions and making them come true.
It’s true. When you’re working for someone else, you’re working and helping them make their dreams come true. Unless your dream is to see the team and company succeed, then it becomes your dream as well.
But what about your dreams and ambitions? The truth is, no one else but you will be responsible for making them come true. If you don’t work on making your dreams come true, chances are, no one else will.
I’ve had a wake up call just recently, on one of the past day this week. I love what I’m doing now but being realistic and wanting to get on faster in the professional life is pointing me to another direction in life that I’ve previously turned down. Anthony Robbins once said, “If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve gotten.” And thus, to get what you don’t have, you’ll have to do what you’ve never done. And that my friends, is my wake up call. I want so many things in life, and I know that I have the capability to do so, but I need to take that big step and do it.
Cheers, to life, to knowledge and taking action!
- Post Graduation Advice by Diane Pauley (lyssawinograd.wordpress.com)
- 20 Things I Wish I Had Learned in School (lifehack.org)
- Why talented creatives are leaving your agency (creativereview.co.uk)