I’m presenting at Nanjing University today about how to get a job and start building a career. Here are a few points from what I’ll be sharing…
1. Forget your CV. If you’re spending time thinking about your choice of font, listing “excel” as one of your talents… you’re wasting time and missing the point.
2. Figure out what you’re actually interested in and what you’re willing to work hard for. You don’t have to have a five year plan but you have to actually give a damn about something- anything- now.
3. Get up early, stay up late and study, study, study everything you possibly can. Take a shit job (I did… in financial aid) that gives you free time to study more.
4. Create and publish, even if you think you have nothing to say. If you have nothing to say, ask questions. Lots of them. You’ll be surprised who shows up to answer them when they know that you care about figuring them out.
5. Find people who inspire you- who you respect. Then, figure out where they work.
6. Learn everything you can about their company. Don’t just learn what the company is good at. Learn what its executives want to be good at. Figure out if you can help them with that.
7. Turn off your computer and ask for five minutes of their time. Have a genuine conversation, offline. Trade questions and ideas- not business cards.
8. Stay in touch. Share. Share often. Forget your own agenda. Figure out what keeps them up at night and share what will help them move forward.
9. Flirt with opportunity to ward off that sad look of desperation. But, stay fiercely loyal.
10. Work four jobs at once- one of them as a writer online. Fail, figure out new processes, find inspiration through doing a ton of work.
11. Ask for exactly what you want and prove, even on a Monday morning- especially on a Monday morning- that you’re willing to do the work to get it, to create it.
12. When you land the job, that’s just the beginning. Work harder. Create more. Ask more questions. Speak up- in meetings, around clients, around executives. Be brave. Get pissed off and find a new solution. Create new answers.
13. Never stop giving a damn. About them, about your passion, about the fact that you’re going to spend the rest of your life doing this.
14. Again, create a good CV and then forget about it. Being qualified for a job, having the right past experience doesn’t count for much. What matters most is that you show up, bring a new perspective and do the work better than it could have been done before you arrived.
Images borrowed for the presentation from a number of sources- most linked here: pinterest.com/amandamooney