I, Caroline (Curtis’s marketing manager), have once again taken over his blog to provide insight into the Millennial experience. Whether you’re a Millennial or not, I’m sure you have a Dream Job. If you’re not working your Dream Job right this second, then this post applies to you.
What does your dream job look like? Does it have a certain number of zeroes on the paycheck? Does it prioritize flexibility? Would it include a personal assistant?
Or would it just require a consistent paycheck, of any size, for any number of hours of work? For many recent college graduates, that hope is their reality. The Millennial unemployment rate has spiked to just over 16%, according to a report by Generation Opportunity, which means that there are a lot of young people that would give just about anything just to have consistent work.
Not even those with jobs are celebrating, however. According to Forbes Magazine, “An additional 53 percent are either jobless or underemployed relative to their education—and only 30 percent of Millennials actually feel that their job is part of their long-term career plan.”
Clearly, there are a lot of young Americans that aren’t working their dream jobs. When you’re not working your dream job, the temptation is to think that it doesn’t matter how much effort you give.
Though your lack of attention to detail may or may not permanently damage the company you’re working for, it will permanently damage you.
Don’t tell people you’re overqualified: show them with your over-achievement.
The good news is that you can still Live the Dream even if the job you’re working isn’t ideal. For one thing, you’re Living the Dream of all of your unemployed peers. For another thing, your job is what you make it. If you treat your work like it’s important, deserving of your best effort and greatest focus, you’ll be amazed at how different you’ll begin to feel about “just another day” at your job. Treat everything you do like it’s your Dream Job, and you’ll both reach your goals faster as well as gain the respect of those around you.
To get started working your Dream Job right now:
Arrive at work on time, which really means arriving 10-15 minutes early so you’re ready to start on time. It doesn’t matter if the first thing you do is fill tubs for the dog wash or heat up the fryer: don’t be late.
Pay attention to details. Don’t be satisfied with dirty glassware or wrinkled blouses. Take care with the presentation of both your workstation and your personal appearance. If your employer knows you as a careful, detail-oriented, and well put-together person, he or she will be more likely to recommend you to someone else.
Refuse to indulge the “this-job-is-beneath-me” mentality. The working habits you develop now will follow you to your next job and the one after that. If you consistently arrive to work late, unshowered, and grouchy, don’t expect that to change once you’ve landed a position on your ideal career path.
Work hard. If you’re at the same job you worked in high school, but now with a shiny new bachelor’s degree to your name, you’re probably feeling frustrated and overqualified. Instead of complaining and putting in the minimal effort, use the skills and talents you’ve developed over the past four years to be the best employee you can.
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