Five Tips for What to Look for in a Job

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It's been said that your first job will most likely not end up being your dream job. While this may be true, it's still important to find something that you will enjoy. This advice is true for any type of job, but particularly for those of you who recently graduated college. This time can be fairly intimidating - you don't know exactly what field will be best or what industry will fit your personality. I have spoken to many people who have been in the 'working world' for a while and have drawn some conclusions about how to find a decent first job. Here are some tips:

-Look for jobs that engage you mentally. Otherwise, you will feel like your work is meaningless and you will want to quit imminently.

-Use a variety of sources when searching for a job; this includes networking, alumni associations, online networking sites, niche career web sites, general career web sites, mentors, and the newspaper. You never know where your 'perfect' job will be and it is best to cast a wide net.

-Speaking of alumni associations, lean on yours for career services and advice. Many offer workshops and events for free or a low yearly membership fee. Many will also host networking events in specific fields so you may meet with other alumni and seek advice in person.

-Remember that there is such a thing as intuition. Whether it’s your gut, your head, or your heart – trust it. If you don’t see yourself as being happy in a job, chances are that is a clear indication of your true feelings. For example, when I was switching careers I was hesitant to interview at a company where I’d have an ideal job, but it was in my ‘old’ field. Something told me it wasn’t the right fit for me moving forward into a new career. I ended up canceling the interview (not that I always suggest that!) and I haven’t looked back.

-Lastly, learn as much as you can at your first post-graduation job. Though it may not be the perfect job and you may not stay for a long while, the experience is sure to be invaluable. Make the most of each opportunity – take on extra projects and learn to successfully work in a team. You won’t regret it.

Have a great tip about seeking a job? Please leave a comment below.

Amy M worked in corporate public relations for three years before returning to graduate school to become an English teacher. She is also a freelance writer for CollegeJobBank.Com. Her strengths include: drafting speeches, writing talking points for media interviews, making corporate presentations, and writing for publications. Read more of her blogs at Find jobs and other information at Nexxt.

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