Career Advice

Landing Your First Job

posted on June 23, 2012 | by Amanda Holstein

Landing Your First Job

It doesn’t have to be perfect. Just like the first boy you date, there’s no point in expecting your first job to be perfect. I know, I know – you want it to be your passion, not just a job, but the chances of your first job fulfilling that passion is slim to non. Use it to figure out what that passion is and how to make it a career.

Use your contacts – Daddy can get you the interview, but he can’t get you the job. You want to get the job on your own. Somehow that makes you feel more competent or more deserving. But think about it. Just like finding a roommate, people feel more comfortable hiring someone who’s been recommended by a trusted source. Use your contacts to get the interview, and use your qualities to score the job.

The “wrong” choice won’t ruin your life. You think that first job is the first stop in a career path that’s already been set in stone. Well, it’s not. No trajectory has been set out for you, there’s no knowing what will come your way, what will change in the industry, who you’ll meet, what new skills you’ll learn, etc., etc. Taking that first job will not prevent you from getting a totally different one later in life.

Have multiple resumes. When looking at my experience when I graduated college, I had about 10 resume items involving kids and teaching, and then a bunch of other random things. So I had 2 resumes: my “I want to be a teacher or work with kids in some way” resume, and my “I’ve had experience at various businesses so I might want to work in a corporate setting” resume. No need to show a potential employer completely unrelated experience.

How are you supposed to know what you want to do without ever experiencing it? That’s what first jobs are for. And second, and sometimes third. It’s all part of the process.