Transitioning from academic to professional life hasn’t always been a breeze for most students, but changes and events in the world have significantly impacted career planning and job readiness. The COVID-19 pandemic, in particular, was a significant barrier for college students, with 71% feeling at least somewhat stressed regarding their career preparation and entering the workforce.
Though many students are feeling more ready for work after having gained some recovery after the pandemic, there’s still more that can be done to prepare for a new job. Improving your skills and knowledge can help you feel more confident about your future career and equip you with attractive attributes that can help you land a good job. Here are some ways to build your knowledge and skills before entering the workforce:
3 Ways to Build Your Skills and Knowledge Before Entering the Workforce
Learn about workplace standards
As societal values shift, organizations are also changing their standards to adapt and reevaluate workplace culture. It can help to brush up on your knowledge of these standards, such as corporate social responsibility. This entails how a business practices philanthropic, environmental, economic, and ethical responsibility in how it operates.
Not only do you learn more about what organizations value and increase your knowledge on the topic, but you can also be more discerning about your choices for work. Understanding a company’s values can give you insight as to whether they’re actually putting them into practice and whether you want to align yourself with such a workplace.
Consider additional training
As the world continues to evolve, so will the career landscape. Technology, in particular, has ushered in the creation of new jobs requiring specific skills, which many employers seek as they modernize their operations and business models. While you may have a particular field you want to enter, it can help to build relevant skills for today’s workforce, which can be done through additional training.
Expert-led courses can help you upskill your capabilities in areas like data analysis, UX design, web development, and more. These skills are increasing in demand due to the growth of tech, and getting the proper training to develop them can help you stand out when being considered for recruitment, even in an unrelated field. You might even find a new interest and potential career opportunity to explore through these training courses.
Get a mentor
It can be difficult to find footing as you begin to transition from being a college student to a new professional. As such, engaging in a mentorship can be a great source of guidance for building skills and knowledge before entering the workforce.
A mentor can help you navigate academic and career challenges, offer advice and support, and open up job opportunities through networking with professionals in your desired field. They can also help you be more prepared for work by assisting with resumes and job searching or preparing for interviews.
Having someone more experienced and knowledgeable in the professional world guide you can make a difference in your readiness for work even while you’re still in school. You can reach out to your professors, alumni, and others in the career field you aspire to be in and ask for guidance or advice.
Preparing for work can be a daunting experience, but having the right skills and knowledge can increase your readiness and lessen stress. With the right resources, guidance, and skillset, you’ll feel more confident about what you can offer to a potential role and contribute to an organization.