Recognising Your Value As A Young Person
Being young does not make you less capable. There is a common perception that with age comes wisdom, but the reality is that much of the experience we all gain soon becomes irrelevant in a fast changing world. You are only as good as what you know today. For many businesses, experience is the golden ticket that very few graduates think they have. But remember, no two situations are the same and as young people, expertise of the here and now is just as beneficial as experience of yesterday.
This post is in Collaboration with The Hut* & Hobbs*
I've been having a lot of conversations with many of my friends lately about employment after University. Every summer, Universities release hundreds of thousands of graduates, all looking for graduate careers, and the vast majority being told they don't have the experience required for the roles. Entry level, basic career positions that students like me have spent three years learning how to perform, that we don't have the experience for. One friend of mine was recently turned down from an internship because they didn't have enough "experience" - when the whole point of an internship is to get experience!
It got me thinking about why this happens, and what the businesses want, why so many young people with so much industry knowledge, passion and drive to innovate and bring something new and different, end up settling for far less than they're capable of. I believe young people have so much to give. They have the ability to manage so many things at any one time, to learn and adapt quickly, to evolve with need. Social has made us that way. Having grown up with the internet, we've all been exposed to a huge amount online, which will help us better cope with situations.
So what exactly do employers want when they ask for experience? It's not experience - its reassurance. It's the guarantee that you can perform the task with little to no input.
Smart employers embrace the energy and drive that comes with being young, and allow for the practical learning curves. The reality is, so many of us twenty-somethings can now set up our own businesses, overnight! The internet has made this possible. My biggest tip is to recognise your value as a young person. Set up an online space and show them what you can do. Show them that experience they are so desperately looking for.
In all honesty, my blog has always been the door opener when getting opportunities, and my degree has always come second. It sounds cheesy, but don't underestimate your influence as a younger person.