When I was 22, if you had told me that I'd be an executive recruiter today, your claims would be met with a blank stare, as I did not know the recruiting industry existed. If you told me that I would be in charge of a company, I would have been intimidated.
When I have the time to interact with young, first-time job seekers, they often have views as to what exact company they want to work for and what they want to do with their lives.
Ironically, these young personalities have a better grasp on what they want to do than the rest of society does. Step one to breaking this habit is to understand that the thoughts as to where their career should go were validated by their piers, professors and other outside sources. They did not make the choices.
To break this "Know it all" frame of mind, before the job search even starts, the thinking process must commence. Does the young job seeker what want others have told them or do they want to follow what their gut tells them to do?
If the young job seeker ends up picking the wrong job, they can be being taken advantage of by inept management and can find themselves surrounded by people who don't enjoy their job and are unhappy. The young job seeker must look out for this. A bad work atmosphere that is full of unhappy, bitter people is the last place a young professional wants to end up.
For this reason, they must understand that is foolish to rush into taking a job. Accepting an offer means accepting commitment and changing one's life. This is easier said than done.
If the wrong choice is made, it is not the end of the world, however if the young professional is not careful, the dislike for the position and the people around them can spill over into their personal life. When I listen to some of my employee's former work stories, I find the "norm" to be horrific.
How Can They Make The Best Possible Career Choice?
This is the million-dollar question. There are a few ways that young professionals can make sure that they are making the best career possible career choice.
Regardless, the young professional must come to terms with the fact that, unless they are in the complete minority, they don't know what they want. For a reason that I can't fathom, in today's society uncertainty is abnormal and is seen as something to be ashamed about.
Even though corporate mentality can be tough to deal with, I suggest that a recent college graduate consider spending a few years in corporate.
I have seen the young professional get sucked into the corporate world which tends to be a vacuum, therefore they must be vigilant about becoming complacent. Though, a corporate environment will give the young professional structure and will allow them to better transition to a smaller, more entrepreneurial company.
In the end, the young professional must take steps in order to lower the risk of them choosing the wrong job. These steps can be personal such as coming to terms with the fact that they don't know what they want to do or simply going the corporate route because the structure is already set.
The important thing is that the recent college graduate follow their vision of what they want their career to be and not to follow what others tell them it should be.