5 Career Tips You Should Know As A New Graduate In Nigeria
Career tips are essential to everybody who wants to have a career in any field. You should to be guided properly irrespective of what you already know. This is applicable to those in business, academics, civil service, and indeed every profession. You have to get career tips to succeed and you should keep getting them to keep you successful. At the last quarter of every year, Nigerian tertiary institutions turn out countless graduates who join the ever increasing number of unemployed youths. That is beside the point though as this article is not about unemployment. You see, the focus here is on getting those that are employed either by themselves or by others (government agencies, NGOs and the private sector) to understand some of the things they need to do to survive in their chosen career path.
These career tips come largely from studying the successes of other great men and their experiences in their career paths. As you come out from the university or any other tertiary institution and join an organization or start your own business, please know that the there are things you need to get right. That is what I hope to give you in this article. I sincerely hope it helps you in any career path you chose.
Career tips for Young Graduates In Nigeria
Find Coaches, Mentors and Advocates
The importance of having highly qualified coaches, mentors and advocates cannot be overemphasized. The coach is there to improve your knowledge and skill on the career path. You need a coach not because you are not good at what you do, but because you can be better at it. Your coach gets the best out of you. Let’s take the football world for instance; the best players; Christiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi despite having outrageous skills and talents still need to be coached by others to help them achieve their aims.
You also need a mentor. A mentor is someone that gives you advice on your career path. He is usually someone that has made it in the field you want to delve into. He is someone that is an authority and can make you listen. The major difference between a coach and mentor is that a coach makes you do things whether you like it or not, mostly for your own good while a mentor advises you on how to go about doing those things.
With respect to your career, advocates have skin in the -game. They will go out of their way to help you advance. They will be on the lookout for opportunities where you can increase your impact and can even create opportunities for you. They speak for you and you will do well to have them.
In the corporate world, many key decisions about your career are made when you are not in the room. In these situations, a good advocate will be your voice and present well on your behalf. Their words will often carry more weight than yours could.
Work on Your Ability to Figure Things Out Quickly
Learning is a continuous process and one of the career tips I want to share with you is embedded in the learning cadre. You have to be a very fast learner. The truth remains that most of the things you will need are not covered by textbooks you read in your undergraduate days. Problems are going to come but you should relish them because solving them provides a wide range of knowledge.
Having a strong foundation in your chosen area of career is very important but even more important than that is your ability to develop yourself to be able to figure things out for yourself with expediency.
You want to develop this critical skill, so you can continue to be effective even after you have gone beyond your training. Doing so will enable you to continue to learn and grow on your own. It puts you in the group of people who are known for bringing solutions to the table instead of problems. It can help you reinvent yourself, if you need to pivot and take your career in a different direction.
Develop Your Skills as a Public Speaker
Public speaking is one of the most valued skills in the work place anywhere in the world. Few are born with the ability to be great public speakers, so most people have to work to develop the skill. Whether you are in marketing, finance, personnel management or you are the CEO of a firm, you need to be able to communicate to the public what you think. That is why this is one of the very important career tips.
You should prioritize public speaking and you don’t necessary have to get them in a single shot. If you have it you, then you don’t have any issue, but if you don’t have it, you can get it. It can be developed gradually. You can take classes on public speaking, read books on public speaking and practice on it. Try presiding over a team meeting or presenting something new to your peers. Be an active participant in meetings where you are able to share information. Try to find courses in public speaking. Any of these allow you to practice speaking in front of a group. You will definitely get better.
As you get better, there will be more opportunities to present and practice. Take each opportunity seriously by doing the work to prepare. The more prepared you are, the more confident you will be. The more confident you are, the less nervous you will be. The less nervous you are, the more effective you will be. Your path to CEO or President will only be made easier.
Understand the Power of Communication
Good communication is another important and valuable skill. It is as a result of its importance that it is included in the career tips here. Communication includes both verbal and written forms; water cooler conversations and emails. For some, it can be a difficult skill to develop.
Many people are excited and passionate about their work. When they talk to their peers or their boss, they feel like they should share as many details as possible. They feel the more they say, the better they will be perceived. They end up oversharing.
Others are extremely gifted and have great ideas but have trouble expressing their ideas and thoughts. When they speak with colleagues, they may feel that others aren’t interested in what they are doing. They may assume others already know. For whatever the reason, they don’t share enough information.
I think both of the above scenarios can be equally as damaging, because they both represent poor communication. When you engage in a conversation, the person or group you are speaking with is thinking one of three things about your communication.
- This conversation is much too detailed for my level of interest
- This conversation doesn’t have enough substance to keep me engaged
- This conversation feels just right
When you communicate, you are expected to concern yourself with achieving the third option above. Once you can do this, you can pass the right information at all times and get the required response.
Be Smart About Assignments
This is one of the interesting career tips that I want to bring to your knowledge. This is mostly applicable to those working for others at various levels; large-scale, medium scale and small scale. The thought of packing up and moving to a different location can be very exciting. You will get to meet new people. You will get to travel and experience other cultures. You may even be able to learn a new language. These are all great benefits, but it is important to look at the full picture when considering an assignment. Doing so is the only way you will be able to make an educated decision.
If you are pursuing the assignment for personal reasons, be sure to think ahead and be honest about what you expect to gain from a year or two away.
If you are hoping to advance your career by taking an assignment, make sure the terms of your re-entry are clear and documented. Don’t assume you will get promoted when you come back. Don’t assume you will be able to jump back in and pick up where you left off. Don’t assume that everyone (or anyone) will recognize your increase in value, after you have learned to navigate and be successful in a new and foreign environment. Have the tough conversation about what exactly is in it for you and what success metrics will be used to evaluate your time away.
Your career is part of your physical life and has long standing effects on your spiritual and emotional life. These career tips will help in shaping these effects the way it will be favorable to you. Your career is really a long one and I sincerely hope you enjoy it and become a blessing to humanity. Good luck.