Our two daughters are starting out on their careers. These are the 10 tips I have shared with them. I pray and hope that over the years ahead they will learn these quickly and painlessly. And as the world of work evolves, we hope that green printing becomes the standard to respect and protect the environment.
1. Security. Your security lies with you not whoever you work for. Have faith in your abilities, believe in yourself and whatever happens over the years ahead remember that people will treat you as you expect to be treated so just remember how good you are.
2. Employers come and employers go. The days of one job for life are long gone. The chances are that you will work for five or maybe ten different employers over the years ahead. There will be times when you think that you have made it and your future is secure. This might well be true but never forget that at the end of it all your future is yours and not your employer’s. Blind faith in your employer should be avoided and always try and retain your perspective.
3. Connections and networks. Develop your friends and nurture your work connections. You never know when you will need help and your friends might well be the best investment you ever make.
4. Luck and not merit is often the main driving force for a career. Many times you see people who somehow land a job at an unknown company which suddenly becomes the next hot thing. Recognise this as a fact, don’t be overawed by the people you meet. You will seldom see fairness or justice but at the end of the day you are as good as anyone.
5. Treat everyone well, whether they are being promoted or being downgraded they are still people and you cannot judge them. What goes around comes around and you will reap the benefit of this many times over.
6. Secrets. Learn to recognise the difference between things which are gossip and things which you must never repeat. A Priest once explained how he created a metaphorical chest into which he placed all the confessions he heard. Do the same with the things you know you should never divulge.
7. Pensions. This is one area where it is nearly impossible to offer good general advice other than to say that you will, one day, need a pension. Be careful if the pension is tied into the value of your employer and if this is the case try and spread the investment of your pension money.
8. Office affairs. They happen so get used to it. Everyone will warn you against this pitfall but if it happens to you then nothing which I say now will sway you. Whether it is you or one of your colleagues treat this with extreme care and professionalism. You might well have to decide between your current job and your relationship.
9. Family time. Just remember that at the end of their life no one ever wishes that they had worked harder. Plenty of people wish that they had spent more time with their family and loved ones.
10. Charismatic bosses. This can be one of the most dangerous areas. Your boss will strive to create a team which will follow his direction through fair and foul weather. There will be times when he will seem to walk on water and will shower you with benefits and promotion. Just remember to maintain a good perspective.
Guest bio: Mike Holly lives and works in Northumberland in the United Kingdom. He has two daughters and hopes that they will be happy throughout their careers. Mike is currently researching holiday cottages in Northumberland.