As graduation is approaching, for many young professionals, it is time to start preparing for life after graduation.
Here are 5 tips from my experience in the industry, as well as in entrepreneurship, to prepare you for the life, career, and success you are hoping for after graduation.
1. Network now! Find what aspect of an industry you are draw the most to and join the organizations that support that. There are organizations for hotel management, event planning, travel, tourism, and many other industries. Most organizations have a local Northern California chapter, which host ongoing educational events and networking opportunities. This is a great way to be learn about the industry, stay up to date, and to potentially meet your future employer.
2. Dress for Success! When attending industry events, going on interview, or attending classes on campus, be sure to dress professionally. This is not to say that you have to wear a suit to class but how you show up, is how you appear to your professor. Professors know people in the industry and can be liaisons to opportunities. When they are asked what students they could recommend, you want to be the first person they think of, by the impression you make.
3. Learn outside of the classroom! Engulf yourself in your future industry. Find out about, and sign up for publications regarding your chosen profession (or a few professions if you haven't decided yet). What us typically taught through textbook is a broad overview of an industry, but ongoing,current publications give you an inside glimpse into more specifics. This can help provide you direction toward your future career.
4. Utilize social media! Using LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram, you can connect with professionals in the industry. Create your profile to show yourself as you would want your employer to see you. On Twitter, find mentors already doing what you want to do. Follow them, retweet them, favorite tweets they post, etc. You can do the same with places you would like to work, like top hotels or companies. As you show involvement and activity in the things these people and companies post, they will begin to notice you. Don’t miss the opportunity to get noticed!
5. Volunteer and impress! Take any opportunity to volunteer in the industry. Large companies are always seeking volunteers. These are the type of resume builders that employers will look at. The more involved you can be, the more experience you gain, the more you can talk about it when you interview for a job. As you are volunteering, show up and show out! Impress whoever you are working with; they will remember you.