One of the things that drives be crazy when I speak with new graduates is that so many of them are looking for their “dream job”. While I can’t fault anyone for wanting this, I don’t feel that it is realistic at this stage. There are two reason for this. The first has to do with your personal experiences. The second has to do with your experience level (from an employers perspective).
First, without any real experience, it’s difficult to know what you really want to do with your life. When I was offered my first ‘real’ job out of school, it was in sales. I had been convinced when I graduated that I wanted to be in sales or marketing, so I thought that this was the perfect thing for me. I was sure that I had found my dream job.
Well, that simply wasn’t the case.
While the company I was working for (a Fortune 500 technology company) was rated one of the best employers in the country, I quickly learned that sales wasn’t for me. Every morning I woke up with knots in my stomach knowing that I hated what I was doing. I was miles away from my dream job. Ultimately, at this stage in my career, I just didn’t know what I was looking for.
Second, going back to the experience factor, an employer is likely not going to hand over the “key to the shop” to a relatively untested new graduate. You may have all of the education in the world, but without real world experience, employers will test you with smaller tasks before giving you more responsibility. Hopefully, this will lead to your dream job.
In my opinion, it’s far more realistic (and potentially rewarding) to be focusing on finding a rewarding career. A rewarding career is something that you will not only enjoy doing, but get rewarded fairly for. My personal belief is that if more new graduates spent more time looking for a rewarding career instead of their “dream job”, it will avoid a great deal of stress and frustration.
So look for a rewarding career first and save your dream job for a few years down the line.
Agree? Disagree? Leave a comment below!