5 Important Lessons You’ll Learn From Your First Job

July 10, 2017

Searching to find your first "real" job can feel a little overwhelming. Ok, it can feel very overwhelming. You're thrust into the professional world armed with a formal education, but lacking the office experience where you learn the skills lecture halls don't teach. Though it's an exciting challenge to find that "perfect" role to jumpstart your career, it's important to focus on what skills you can learn that you'll carry and develop throughout your entire career. Each of us has a unique view of our own entry-level programs here at Bluewolf. I spoke to some fellow Pack members about their first job experiences to get their views on what you should look for in an entry-level role, and here's their advice. 

Find Your Voice
When I first came to Bluewolf, I went through our entry-level Agile Business Executive (ABE) program for new graduates. One of the most influential components of the program that helped increase my confidence and fuel my success as I moved into a Senior Consultant role, was conducting presentations. During a Salesforce deep-dive retreat, we gave quite a few presentations to members of Bluewolf's C-level executives. While intimidating at first, it gave me the confidence that I could make similar presentations when meeting with clients. It also gave me the opportunity to observe and learn how to confidently introduce and conduct myself in meetings. Confidence is crucial in any situation. Whether building personal relationships or earning business, the way you carry yourself leaves a lasting impression on those with whom you interact, so find the opportunity to build your confidence and find your own, strong voice. 

- Andrew Otton, Senior Consultant

Communication is Key
Business school prepared me for team-based work, but it did not prepare me for remote work with a team spread across the country. Remote teamwork is vastly different from getting together in a room and talking through a project. As an observant and calculated worker, I had to learn to be more vocal about getting the help I needed or justifying my work. It's also been a twist on working independently, because I am still responsible for my individual work, but I am also responsible for the team's project delivery. We inject technology into the workflow to aid the team, but it's the soft skills, the effective communication, that makes a team successful.

Adrian Guadalupe, Business Analyst

Mind Your Mentor
During my experience in the ABE program, I was paired with another Business Analyst and ABE graduate who was instrumental in helping me navigate my own way. She helped me understand the onboarding process and related tasks to help me acclimate to my role. She supported my studies towards required certifications by pointing me in the direction of valuable resources and she pushed me to break out of my comfort zone to build my confidence. Though I was fortunate to find someone who had a similar experience, it can be equally enlightening to find someone whose background and experiences are completely different. The important piece is to find a mentor who embraces you and can evaluate your strengths and weaknesses to provide the kind of encouragement to help you constantly improve. 

- Cait Fuller, Business Analyst

Never Stop Learning
As Bluewolf's Global Talent Manager, I am deeply involved in the hiring process for all of our amazing employees, including our entry-level professionals. When bringing these individuals on board, we immediately involve them in our training programs and provide them with the opportunity to learn everything from the bottom up. Being successful at a company not only requires doing your own job as well as you can, but understanding the organization and how your positions sit within a larger team. More broadly than that, you'll want to understand the company's overall goals and mission. Be open to learning as much as you possibly can. During your interviews, ask about the company's professional development programs.  Look for a program that can help you see the bigger picture - to help you identify what makes a business tick, what the core values are, what matters most to the company leadership and why, and how you can actively contribute to those larger goals. 

- Kimberly Capicotto, Global Talent Manager

Take Advantage of Technology
Bluewolf has a motto: It's always now. We believe in bringing the technology of the future to our clients right here and right now and in order to do so, we need to have vetted expertise across a wide variety of software programs and languages, specifically the Salesforce platforms. Those participating in our entry-level job programs are afforded exceptional access to these technologies and more that allow them to visualize and utilize technology to solve complex business challenges. When selecting your own program, be sure that you are able to tap into the knowledge, technical expertise and resources that will not only allow you to grow in your first post-college role, but thrive well beyond it!

- Gillian Comito, Business Development Manager

When all's said and done, your entry-level job program should enable you, empower you, and support you throughout your tenure. You should look for ongoing educational opportunities, professional development programs, and access to invaluable technology. Align yourself with an organization that encourages regular feedback, provides coaching and mentoring and offers leadership opportunities both within the team and beyond to help you create your own path. You only get one entry-level job experience – make sure the one you choose gives you the tools you'll need to build a successful career!

Want to learn more about Bluewolf and all of our exciting opportunities? View our open positions and start your future with Bluewolf.

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