Advice for Newly Grads: Avoid Sabotaging Your Career

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College gradsEnsure a great head start in your career by following these tips.

Now that you have graduated from college and earned your degree, you must be eager to enter into the world of work. While this can be an exciting time for most newly grads, there are many who cannot help but feel overwhelmed, scared and unprepared to make the transition from college to career.

This is not surprising since according to a poll conducted in 2014 by consulting company Accenture, while 85% of the class of 2014 is confident that they can get a job in their chosen career, only two thirds can successfully do so. And while 69% believe that they get a job in less than 6 months, only 42% will actually land their first job within that time frame. In addition, less than 60% of the 80% who expect to make more than $25,000 per year will actually realize their objective.

Given this bleak scenario, how can you set yourself up for a successful career without tripping over some of the most common career mistakes most fresh grads make? Here are some suggestions that can help you accomplish your goals.

Take a more objective look at yourself. Do a personal SWOT (strength, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) analysis to establish your strengths and use them to show potential employers how you can be an asset to their organization. Take note of areas that need further improvement so you can formulate a plan to acquire these skills, and use them to further improve your chances of landing a job right after graduation.

Get expert opinions. Arranging a career coaching appointment with an expert can help you refine your job search strategies. These people can also help you customize your resume and cover letter to address the specific needs of the hiring manager, highlight your strengths, and express your genuine interest in the opportunity.

Consider searching the job boards. Checking the job boards and other similar sites can help you spot great opportunities but don?t limit your job search to these online resources. Consider expanding your job search by following companies in Twitter and checking their Careers page on a regular basis. You should also consider networking with colleagues and alumni to uncover hidden markets.

Make your social media presence work for you. Check your social media presence to make sure that there is nothing that can turn potential employers off.

Know the importance of following up. Employers give high regards to people who show genuine interest in the opportunity. To do this, consider following up on all applications and interviews. As an added bonus, this can help demonstrate your professionalism and make you stand out from the rest of the competition.