To get a head start in looking for future careers, one must start planning for their dream career while in high school. The first step is to know what companies look for in new grads. A student can increase the chances of securing their dream job by starting early. One way of doing so is by starting to learn skills that are considered more “in demand”. Employers prefer recruiting candidates who already know essential skills. High school is a perfect time to start developing these skills. Starting early in your career preparation journey will give you an edge over others. At a broad level, the preparation consists of 3 categories:
Develop Interpersonal Skills:
Recruiters notice this trait frequently while interviewing candidates. Most employers put a large emphasis on personalities that consist of approachable and positive values.
To improve your personable skills, focus on the way you carry and present yourself. Not only will it help you in your career, but will also help in other aspects of your life. High school is a great time to develop interpersonal skills. Socializing more and talking to people is a simple and effective way to start.
Another way to develop these skills is by joining societies/organizations in school or college. This is an excellent way to ramp up your soft skills and tell employers you were an active student who knows how to work in a team-based setting.
New graduates often ignore the importance of soft skills. We use these skills while interacting and working with others. Soft skills include strong communication, critical thinking, time and work management, adaptability, etc. Since a lot of what is taught in schools does not directly focus on such skills, it becomes essential to work on them on your own. Read more about them in our blog ‘Must-Have Soft Skills for Interns’.
Job Relevant Knowledge:
Employers prefer candidates that have relevant subject knowledge. They prefer students who know the theory of the subject and can practically connect it with the actual job. They do not expect you to join their job with full knowledge of the work, but you must have command over the job requirements and related subject knowledge.
Students should opt for subjects in school or college related to the or career they are interested in.
In many cases, studying the subject only in school is not sufficient. One must strengthen this knowledge by gaining practical experience. A great way of doing this is by reading extra books and discussing these topics with teachers and friends, for example.
Another way to strengthen this knowledge base is to take online courses. These courses act as a powerful medium to build up knowledge. There are thousands of courses available online that cover a variety of subjects. These are helpful as you can choose a topic you are interested in, learn it at your own pace, and apply this knowledge further. In this competitive world, online courses are an easy way to enhance your skills and enable you to get prepared for future jobs. For example, if a high school student is interested in marketing, they can enhance their knowledge beyond the theory of marketing that can be taught by books by learning digital marketing through interactive courses.
Experience is one of the most influential factors in the hiring process. This might sound contradictory, as it is hard to receive practical experience without previous relevant experience. However, employers look for those who can show that they have worked in a setting that allows them to display their subject knowledge to some degree. When starting, this may be in the form of technical projects, tutoring jobs, or doing similar work for a non-profit organization, but it is important to display this experience when applying to a job. We know how competitive it is to receive a job offer in today’s day and want to ensure that you start as early as possible to receive practical experience. This gives employers a strong assumption that candidates will have a better understanding of the subject, methods of working with a team, and will fulfill their responsibilities.
Internships offer industry-relevant work experience. They can be the most valuable addition to one’s resume.
Participating in internships offer a multifold benefit. For employers, they get better-trained employees. As for students, it allows them to explore and validate their areas of interest. Sometimes, an actual job might differ from our expectations. Internships can give proper job experience so that students can make a more informed decision.
Internships can also allow you to network with professionals in the industry. Networking is an essential step in the professional world. One can interact with experienced professionals and get insights that they would not be able to receive elsewhere.
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High school is the ideal time to develop these valuable skills. Mastery of these three traits will give you an edge over others in the professional world. The skills listed above are essential in today’s world to achieve career satisfaction. Apart from them, you will learn many other things as you advance in your career.