I heard one of my professors say something that struck me. It’s something we don’t realize when we’re ending our college careers and thinking about the job market:
“Companies don’t hire you, people do.”
This is vital and supports another point she mentioned, it’s essential that we also ‘be ourselves.’ We get lost in what we think we should be. And when interviewing, I think it’s vital to just be yourself.
Here’s a example that I first hand learned this and one of my hardest working moments that paid off to date:
I decided that Virginia Tech was the place I wanted to obtain my MBA. I meet with the Associate Dean and everyone else associated with the program. They told me I was not going to get in. Something had to change.
I studied 4-5 hours a day for the GMAT, meet with every professor I could, collected recommendation letter from everyone, and I had accepted that I would not take no for an answer.
They knew how much I wanted it. Not getting in wasn’t an option. They saw that I was driven. They saw I wanted this. They saw a piece of me-my personality, my drive, and all the things that make me-me.
I was accepted to the Virginia Tech MBA program.
We might complain we are not at the top, but I have witnessed what happens when there is not hierarchy. There is nothing. No synergy of any sort, no communication, no functionality, and certainly no room for productivity since all energy is focused on restoring the basics.
Yesterday, we had a guest speaker in class. He was here to talk about jobs: searching for jobs, finding jobs, and how to conform to what employers want.
He talked about our resumes. What they should and should not say. How large the font should be and how we can position ourselves to stand out of the stack of resumes.
He also mentioned that 70-80% of jobs graduate get after college is in some way related to a connection that they have made and that most jobs are not posted and/or offered to everyone.
He even continued to tell us that when searching for a job- we should know what we want, focus on a certain position, a certain company and even a certain location.
I was fuming. You’re going to come into a class of graduating seniors and tell us this now? This is something we should have heard when we were juniors, or even sophomores.
At some point near the end-he mentioned, subdued and under his breath, that it’s important that we enjoy our jobs.
WHAT. THE. FUCK.
After telling us to conform, narrow, and blindly choose a path- you mention that we should find something we enjoy.
Everything this man had said lost credibility. I saw the class roll their eyes. I started to laugh out loud. The professor thought we were packing up because class was over, when I know that I was plotting my escape from the notion that I must conform.
As a person who values creativity, innovation, non-conforming actions and always seeks to find another way of doing things than most, I was sick. This man was crushing entrepreneurial dreams.
He told me I should join the entrepreneur club here at the University.
Oh gee, thank you very fucking much. I’m a graduating senior and you’re telling me this now?
We should be encouraging anyone, and everyone to find a path of their own, and more importantly- to make desires a priority in job searching.