Graduate Job-Hunting Advice—Martin Archer
Are you trapped in past failures?
25th October 2013
I had an interesting chat with a candidate recently who had seen some of his friends achieve a better job. He had nothing and it was making him feel really bad.
This had created a huge problem for him because he had lost confidence that he was actually a good candidate for a graduate scheme. He was stuck in the negative way of thinking which was that he couldn’t change his future because it was already a couple of years since his friends had started graduate schemes. He said he’d made bad decisions. He clearly felt like applying for graduate schemes was like trying to win the lottery – it was a desperate, and unlikely, hope.
This candidate was approaching their life wrongly and the result is certainly unhappiness. First he was trapped in the past in decisions that were made then. Secondly, he was focussed on what other people had instead of what he himself had. If you think like this you will be unhappy because there are always others who have more.
If you think like this you will be angry because you’re jealous at what others have, you’ll be negative thinking and you’ll probably have no confidence in yourself – this is not what companies want for graduates. But this is how you may feel.
To be a positive thinking person you must be looking at the future and focussing on something to achieve. Most people are daunted by the prospect of climbing a mountain, but as the Chinese say, every journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Make the big plan and then take things step by step.
You must not focus on what other people have but on what you yourself have. You have many good things already. On top of this you can desire to work for more. Be ambitious for more and work intelligently, with integrity, for it. If you learn to be grateful for what you have then you will be able to share in the success of others rather than secretly unhappy and jealous.
Whether it achieves it efficiently or not the whole process of a graduate scheme is trying to find a type of person, a personality, a character. Ultimately this is the sort of person who will earn money for the company, help other people earn more money for the company, and help the company grow and be a great place to work.
Applying for a graduate scheme is not wasting time trying to get a job or trying to trick employers by making up stories. Yes it’s arduous and laborious, but it can also be a journey of discovery for yourself as you learn more about the sort of person you want to be.
Look forward; begin that change.