The Recent Graduate
COMMON QUESTIONS OF RECENT GRADUATES:
- “Am I delusional to think I can land a job I love right out of school?”
- “Do I have to pay my dues at a dead-end job just to get experience?”
- “Will changing my current entry level job make me look flighty?”
- “What do I do when what my parents want for me and what I want for me aren’t aligned?”
- “I think I regret studying everything I studied in school. Am I alone?”
How do I land the job of my dreams? Am I even allowed to ask that question just having finished school?
Recent college graduate in search of fulfillment at work.
Marketing coordinator at a retail company’s corporate office; nine months into role.
- Giselle’s situation was so similar to many recent graduates. She didn’t land her dream job right out of school, but she knew she needed to learn from and gain as much experience from her ‘starter job’ as possible. She needed to assess what was working and what wasn’t with her role to determine if it was the job, her expectations, or what she brought to the table that was making her current role so not a dream job. We agreed on a 3-month Happy Spectacular program together, and Giselle enjoyed our virtual sessions from the comfort of her sunny backyard.
- We began our Discovery process by taking a close look at Giselle’s values and attitudes towards work. It became clear she was massively motivated by wanting to make an impact at work, yet she wasn’t assertive enough to bring her ideas to the table. We dissected her current job to see what clicked and what didn’t.
- Giselle participated in a visualization exercise to define, in exacting detail, her ideal job, right down to her job description: a day/week/month/year in the life of her ideal job, what the dress code would look like, how her co-workers would act, what percentage of time she’d spend on creative work vs. administration, etc. Giselle also took this four-page long outline to the next level by analyzing if and how the ideal job would impact her life.
- With Design as the next phase of Giselle’s program, we charted an action plan to help her get the most value out of her current role (regardless of her consideration to leave), become a more effective contributor at work, become more assertive, and build more recreation into her personal life.
- Giselle’s lack of confidence (both inside and outside of work) was addressed through an exercise where we had her identify the five most empowering words she wanted to keep in mind when she was in a confidence-compromising situation, and paint them on a massive canvas that she moved around her home to keep them top of mind.
- Halfway through Giselle’s program, she took a HWSL challenge to develop and present her ideas for a new product launch to her team leader, which was met with great success. Interestingly, by putting herself in a position to make the impact that mattered so much to her at work, the way she looked at her role started to change.
- Giselle then went through an exercise of creating a professional plan for the balance of the year in her role, to map out her desired contributions to her department. We role-played the discussion she would have with her team leader regarding implementation.
- One of the exercises that resonated the most with Giselle was to pinpoint lessons learned during our program together, and then identify situations where she’d need to actually apply what she learned. Her biggest takeaway was that she was waiting for opportunities to present themselves at work, and she learned that with confidence and planning, she could create the ability to make a difference. This happened to be really applicable within her current company culture, in that her team leader was open to her ideas and passion for growth. She learned how to create and influence a permissive environment.
- Giselle wrapped up her 3-month program with a formalized Work + Life Plan, which reflected the plan she was currently working on in addition to her key learning, goals, values, etc. (because she loved the outdoors we built the plan around a theme of a map in the mountains, which was just plain fun to look at).