Adapting to an ever-changing world can be a difficult task when it comes to entering a job right out of college. Going from 4 years of schooling and a bit of leniency to working a 9 to 5 job can be a shock to many graduates. There are many fantastic skills that we learn throughout those four years at school, however, there are simply some skills that are required for a professional job that we do not learn in class. Developing professionalism skills can help make your transition easier and make you an even more qualified candidate. You may look great on paper, but if you don’t know how to behave on the job, chances are you may not be there long enough to learn. CU is an outstanding university academically, but be prepared to prove to employers that you are serious about working for them.
Here are some key attributes of professionalism that you can work on to help you keep it classy and remain appropriate:
• Specialized knowledge. You can work on this by building expertise in a specific area and staying current with any changes in that area.
• Competency. Work on actively listening to others and observing situations with empathy. This will help to develop your emotional intelligence.
• Honesty and integrity. Don’t be a flake. If you agree to something, stand by your commitment. If you are going to miss a deadline, make sure you have open communication with your boss and co-workers.
• Respect. Use your manners. It might sound simple, however, sometimes we forget basic kindness and good manners when it comes to dealing with people we don’t like.
• Accountability. Hold yourself to a standard. This also ties in with not being a flake because you want others to be able to count on you. Show up mentally present and with the tools you need to complete tasks.
• Self-regulation. You are the only person who can control your actions and thoughts. Set goals and strive to reach them. Your boss does not want to be constantly nagging you to do your job. If that becomes the case, you might not have a job anymore.
• Image. The way you speak, dress, act, and perform are all very influential upon your image. Your online presence also reflects your image. Be yourself, but remember to be professional in the workplace.
For more information on professionalism, be sure to check out the Professionalism Skills workshop tomorrow, February 25th, in the Center For Community S350 from 5:30-6:30pm. This event will be hosted by Career Services.
Hat tip: Mindtools.com