2020

Dear Graduate: What’s Next? I have some ideas…

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This may sound crazy to a recent graduate – but, and I mean it, get yourself a copy of the book Never Eat Alone, by Keith Ferrazzi and Tahl Raz. There are 4 important things you need to do and they are very well elaborated int this book.

First. Welcome to the social world. Your network is going to be a key measure of your destiny. You are going to hear about social networking and social contagion theories – (c’mon, you can google that, right?) – essentially your net worth is going to be determined by the people you interact with. Start now, to think about how you fair in the social game.

Second. Don’t keep score. You will get many opportunities in the coming future, to help someone else get ahead. You will be tempted to keep a score card – some call it paying it forward – but do not fall into that trap. Give to the people around you because you truly want to make sure other people get what they want. Now is a great time to learn to volunteer. Do not ever attend a networking event to give out your business cards – always go to meet someone’s need – introduce them to someone you know, invite them to a coffee, or give your time and skill to get them to achieve something. Give, and give. This is about building your social capital.

Third. Remain in Touch. You (should) have a smartphone, it can store up to 500 contacts – the other 1500 – just kidding- can be stored on your email contacts app. Make it a point to reach out to your contacts at least once a month. For some, email, others, text or call, and yet for others, schedule time in person. Yes, you have to reach out to your contacts all the time – not just when you need
something.

Forth – Choose to become the ‘king of content’ using your social media to
make truly meaningful connections. This starts with figuring what your voice is going to be. What do you want to be known for? whatever you choose your voice to be, your social media needs to communicate this. Before long there will be people coming to your pages for insights and specific knowledge – and if they don’t remember, Facebook will remind them 1 year later about all your amazing wisdom in that area.

Now about that resume you are going to drop a million times… please and please do not get tempted to say you are an expert (or use words like seasoned, accomplished et al). Not yet. You see when you face your first interview panel, for a job, we are evaluating for authenticity. Actually, we know you just left school, so we know you haven’t worked much yet. Mostly, I want to hear about reasonably believable wins from the few experiences you have. Your honesty and self awareness becomes more valuable at this time, than any padding you might add to your resume. When you face hiring managers, like myself, you best know I will have detailed your resume pretty well, and I will be looking for what isn’t there. As with everything in life, the truth always wins out.

Fifth. Do some career mapping. What kind of boss do you want? Which kind of colleagues do you fancy? Not every job or sector is going to work for you. Not every commute makes sense. You are going to need skills, knowledge and many experiences. You need to know which job or organization will give you what you need in that moment in time. when to chase for what. When it comes to finding the right career, there’s many narrow paths of wisdom. Find the one that works for you. To do this, speak to career coach. Attend a career mapping session with the Kampala Leadership Hub this coming month, and let us support you to make the right decisions about the future.

What’s Next? The answers to this question are more inward than they are outward. The rest of us are here to nudge you along, but you already know what’s next.

The hustle is real.