According to the 2019 McGraw-Hill study, only 40% of college grads felt that their school adequately prepared them for the workforce. Saddled with high debt and no work experience, they found it difficult to find employment. While this is not the case for every college grad, there are quite a few who do not feel equipped to enter their chosen career.
So how do you prepare for the corporate world?
Although academic institutions traditionally focused on classroom lectures, internships have the most benefits for graduating seniors. It gives you real world experience and allows you to see if you like a company or not. Furthermore, working for at least a semester in your chosen field helps you procure professional mentors and gain practical training. If you do well, many times companies will give you a return offer upon graduation.
Forming Professional Relationships
Internships also allow you to form professional relationships which are invaluable in the workforce. It is important for you to also attend networking events at your college, become part of the school’s alumni association and relevant clubs as well as stay in touch with your professors. You should have a professional LinkedIn profile to be able to have conversations with others in your field and to check Glassdoor.com for the inside scoop on potential companies. These relationships can help you move up the corporate ladder and be excellent resources for advice in your career.
Don’t be afraid to speak up in meetings if you feel that you have an idea that could benefit the division, even if you’re the junior member of the team. Your idea could be just what the company has been looking for. If it feels like the right moment to speak up, even if your heart may be pounding, the chances are that upper management will value your input.