Three Practical Tips for People Entering the Workforce in 2020

Entering the workforce is always daunting, but the in-flux job market of 2020 can feel particularly overwhelming. However, you can excel in today’s workforce and take advantage of the changing market by realizing that everyone is new to the 2020 workforce; you aren’t alone. Here are three practical tips to help you feel equipped and empowered to begin your career journey.

  1. Be open to work that isn’t your top choice. As an article on Indeed advises, be open to short-term work or work that’s outside of your top choices during this season of the job market adjusting to COVID-19. These short-term jobs and unanticipated opportunities can provide you with connections, experiences, opportunities to learn more about yourself and your work preferences. Additionally, these experiences can result in skills that will aid you in your long-term career. As Indeed’s article advises, “When looking for job opportunities, prioritize transferable skills and soft skills that could support you in your chosen career path. Even if a job is not in your ideal industry, there may be opportunities to develop skills that you can leverage later when applying for future jobs.” By thinking about work creatively, you can make the most of this changing season to create connections, learn more about yourself and the workforce, and hone in on skills that will last a lifetime.
  2. Become fluent in technology. Across the board, articles about today’s job market highlight the importance of technology. Not only is tech used in tech-focused fields of work, but technology is becoming increasingly prevalent in all career fields as people video chat, email, and collaborate online. Even if technology isn’t your thing, simply learn some basics and you’ll be empowering yourself to feel confident and equipped for anything today’s workforce hands your way. Choose one new tech skill to learn each week, or talk with a friend who has a skill you’d like to improve upon. Simple steps like these will prove invaluable as you navigate technology in today’s work climate.
  3. Be open and aware of other opportunities and possibilities. According to an article by the Young Entrepreneur Council on Inc., the traditional concept of climbing a corporate ladder is giving way to the current trends of changing careers and engaging in job opportunities on the side. The Inc. article quotes Solomon Thimothy, the president of OneIMS, explaining to companies that, “Your workers will have side hustles and it’s totally fine. I think it’s a positive change and we need to encourage personal growth.” Open your eyes to cultivate awareness of multiple vocational opportunities. Perhaps your coworker runs an Etsy shop that piques your interest. Take your coworker to coffee and ask for more information about starting a small business. Maybe your manager points out a certain area that you excel in. Instead of forgetting about the compliment, choose to hone in on that skill and see if there are any jobs that utilize it. Don’t allow these opportunities to overwhelm you or over-crowd your schedule; use them as insights into life-giving vocational possibilities. By being aware of the opportunities and options around you, you won’t feel confined to a single career but will be free to make informed and educated choices based on your skill set and preferences.

By practically being willing to work in places that aren’t your dream job, you’ll gain experience and exposure to new and helpful sectors of the workforce. By learning how to be competent in the realm of technology, you’ll be opening doors to opportunities in today’s tech-focused job market. By cultivating an awareness and appreciation of the diverse range of options available in today’s job market, you’ll feel free and able to pursue things you love and excel in. Which practical tip will you implement this week?

By Carissa Joy Burns

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