Graduation for seniors and graduate students is quickly approaching; congratulations to those who have made it. Now, the moment of truth: It is not going to be easy to get that job that you have worked so hard for. I am not writing this as a scare tactic, not at all. I am writing this to share the things that I was never warned about.
By now, most of you have visited Career Services in the Bart Luedeke Center and, with the help of the staff, typed out your talented résumés. But while you are given advice about how to get a job, you are not told how to keep it.
After you get hired, there will be times when you may not like how the system works. You may not like how your manager runs the department or assigns work, but you have to be very careful in asking for a change or even proposing a suggestion for improvement. I have learned that, if you challenge on the basis of “I can do better than that,” then you will more than likely be disliked by your organization. I cannot stress enough, especially in these economic times, that you have to deal with that matter more diplomatically than usual. Meaning? Sometimes that change will not come as quickly as you would like, and also that you are not yet high enough in the ranks to make a proposal for a massive change.
The second thing in retaining a job is finding a mentor in the organization. The benefit of having a mentor is that it does help your career. Not only that, but it also builds a relationship that counts as well as adds benefit and satisfaction to your professional and personal lives. It is important to have a mentor whom you respect and of whom you are able to ask any questions.
Lastly, when in a new environment, wearing a nice suit will only carry you so far. But wearing that same suit with a smile, a positive attitude, confidence and, above all, diplomacy will make you an individual that people will remember.
Sukhvinder Bedi is a grad student in the Organizational Leadership Program.