“What do you want to be when you grow up?”
Hearing that question when I was young, I always felt like I was expected to give a very specific answer like “doctor” or “astronaut.” Eventually, I thought, I’ll find one defining job title and stick with it for the rest of my life.
But career paths are not so linear today. But some people still hold onto outdated career advice.
So if you hear any of these old-school career advice tips when you’re trying to find the right job — you might be better off ignoring them.
1. Company loyalty pays off
Gone are the days when you stayed at the same company for thirty years. Most workers switch jobs several times throughout their lives.
And job hopping usually pays off big. According to Forbes, people who stay in the same company could experience 50 percent lower pay growth than those who move around. And the Resolution Foundation found that annual pay raises aren’t keeping up with inflation. Even if you get a raise every year, you may not see significant income growth by staying at the same company.
Long-term employee loyalty isn’t just less common — it’s a bad idea if you want to grow your paycheck.
2. Decide on your career early and stay the course
According to LinkedIn, the average worker today switches jobs three times within the first five years after college. It’s not unusual for recent college graduates to explore several different fields. Thanks to continuing education programs, it’s never too late to learn new skills.
General Assembly, for instance, provides bootcamp courses in web development, data science, and other lucrative fields. According to its report, 99 percent of graduates get full-time jobs within 180 days of graduation.
You don’t always need an official degree or years of experience to land a job. More and more employers are interested in portfolios as evidence of your achievements, rather than formal work experience.
3. Keep your personal life out of the workplace
There used to be a firm line between your work life and personal life. You had a persona at work that was different from the “real you” on your off hours.
While it’s still important to maintain a professional demeanor, most workplaces don’t ask you to erase your personal life. In fact, many offices encourage you to share your interests and activities. Forward-thinking workplaces aim for a vibrant, inclusive culture. Instead of dividing yourself in two, you can bring your whole self to work.
This merging of your professional and personal life might happen as early as the interview stage. Hiring managers often look for someone who is a “cultural fit.” By sharing your passions, you might make a personal connection that could land you a job.
4. Stick to a reliable 9-to-5 schedule
One of the most in-demand workplace perks today is a flexible schedule. Workers want the chance to control their hours and many even want to work from home part or all of the week.
More and more companies are heeding the call for flexible hours and work-life balance. No longer do you have to grit your teeth and bear the 9-to-5.
Of course, not all companies are open to putting schedules in the hands of workers. But if flexibility is important to you, it’s possible to find progressive companies that are focused on output rather than time.
5. Don’t ask too many questions
You may have gotten the advice to “fake it ’til you make it.” The theory behind it: Don’t ask too many questions or you’ll come off as incompetent.
But the best managers invite questions. They want employees who actively seek out information and fill in gaps in knowledge.
The Minds at Work group, for example, works with managers to help them build deliberately developmental organizations (DDOs). DDOs foster a culture where people discuss their errors and weaknesses as a way to improve themselves and their company.
6. Don’t challenge the boss
You may have grown up learning to keep your head down and defer to authority. But most workplaces today want employees who will push back and express their opinions.
Good managers aren’t looking for blind obedience. Rather, they want open discourse and honest feedback.
Former CEO Margaret Heffernan says that constructive conflict is essential for successful organizations. Colleagues should not work in echo chambers. “[When] we create conflict, we enable ourselves and the people around us to do our very best thinking,” Heffernan says.
7. Make job security your top priority
According to a survey by Bentley University, 67 percent of millennials want to start their own businesses. But only 13 percent aim to climb the corporate ladder.
“Millennials see chaos, distrust of management, breaking of contracts, and bad news associated with business,” says Fred Tuffile, director of Bentley’s Entrepreneurial Studies program. “They’ve watched their relatives get fired and their peers sit in cubicles and they think, ‘There has to be a better way.’”
This kind of entrepreneurship may come off as dangerously risky to older generations, but many workers today are more accepting of that kind of risk.
Besides starting your own business, you might also choose to work in a startup. For many, building a service or product from the ground up means more than the security of working for an established company.
Take career advice with a grain of salt
Even the most well-meaning career advice isn’t necessarily accurate. Technology has transformed the working world and best practices for employees and job hunters have changed along with it.
Even if you’re making unconventional choices today, they may end up being common practice tomorrow. Base your decisions on current realities, rather than on what worked in the past.
And if your employer seems stuck in the old days, it might be time to shake things up. Find out how to make yourself more marketable after you graduate college.
Interested in refinancing student loans?Here are the top 6 lenders of 2018!
|Lender||Variable APR||Eligible Degrees|
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1 Important Disclosures for Earnest.
To qualify, you must be a U.S. citizen or possess a 10-year (non-conditional) Permanent Resident Card, reside in a state Earnest lends in, and satisfy our minimum eligibility criteria. You may find more information on loan eligibility here: https://www.earnest.com/eligibility. Not all applicants will be approved for a loan, and not all applicants will qualify for the lowest rate. Approval and interest rate depend on the review of a complete application.
Earnest fixed rate loan rates range from 3.89% APR (with Auto Pay) to 5.87% APR (with Auto Pay). Variable rate loan rates range from 2.47% APR (with Auto Pay) to 5.87% APR (with Auto Pay). For variable rate loans, although the interest rate will vary after you are approved, the interest rate will never exceed 8.95% for loan terms 10 years or less. For loan terms of 10 years to 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 9.95%. For loan terms over 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 11.95% (the maximum rates for these loans). Earnest variable interest rate loans are based on a publicly available index, the one month London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR). Your rate will be calculated each month by adding a margin between 1.82% and 5.50% to the one month LIBOR. The rate will not increase more than once per month. Earnest rate ranges are current as of Month/Day/Year, and are subject to change based on market conditions and borrower eligibility.
Auto Pay discount: If you make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic, monthly deduction from a savings or checking account, your rate will be reduced by one quarter of one percent (0.25%) for so long as you continue to make automatic, electronic monthly payments. This benefit is suspended during periods of deferment and forbearance.
The information provided on this page is updated as of 08/21/18. Earnest reserves the right to change, pause, or terminate product offerings at any time without notice. Earnest loans are originated by Earnest Operations LLC. California Finance Lender License 6054788. NMLS # 1204917. Earnest Operations LLC is located at 302 2nd Street, Suite 401N, San Francisco, CA 94107. Terms and Conditions apply. Visit https://www.earnest.com/terms-of-service, email us at email@example.com, or call 888-601-2801 for more information on ourstudent loan refinance product.
© 2018 Earnest LLC. All rights reserved. Earnest LLC and its subsidiaries, including Earnest Operations LLC, are not sponsored by or agencies of the United States of America.
2 Important Disclosures for Laurel Road.
Laurel Road Disclosures
Savings example: average savings calculated based on single loans refinanced from 9/2013 to 12/2017 where borrowers’ previous rates were disclosed. Assumes same loan terms for previous and refinanced loans, and payments made to maturity with no prepayments. Actual savings for individual loans vary based on loan balance, interest rates, and other factors.
Application detail: 5 minutes indicates typical time it takes to complete application with applicant information readily available. It does not include time taken to provide underwriting decision or funding of the loan.
Instant rates mean a delivery of personalized rates for those individuals who provide sufficient information to return a rate. For instant rates a soft credit pull will be conducted, which will not affect your credit score. To proceed with an application, a hard credit pull will be required, which may affect your credit score.
Total savings calculated by aggregating individual average savings across total borrower population from 9/2013 to 12/2017. Individual average savings calculation based on single loans refinanced from 9/2013 to 12/2017 where borrowers’ previous rates were provided. Assumes same loan terms for previous and refinanced loans, and payments made to maturity with no prepayments. Actual savings for individual loans vary based on loan balance, interest rates, and other factors.
3 Important Disclosures for SoFi.
4 Important Disclosures for LendKey.
Refinancing via LendKey.com is only available for applicants with qualified private education loans from an eligible institution. Loans that were used for exam preparation classes, including, but not limited to, loans for LSAT, MCAT, GMAT, and GRE preparation, are not eligible for refinancing with a lender via LendKey.com. If you currently have any of these exam preparation loans, you should not include them in an application to refinance your student loans on this website. Applicants must be either U.S. citizens or Permanent Residents in an eligible state to qualify for a loan. Certain membership requirements (including the opening of a share account and any applicable association fees in connection with membership) may apply in the event that an applicant wishes to accept a loan offer from a credit union lender. Lenders participating on LendKey.com reserve the right to modify or discontinue the products, terms, and benefits offered on this website at any time without notice. LendKey Technologies, Inc. is not affiliated with, nor does it endorse, any educational institution.
5 Important Disclosures for CommonBond.
6 Important Disclosures for Citizens Bank.
Citizens Bank Disclosures
|2.47% – 6.99%3||Undergrad & Graduate||Visit SoFi|
|2.47% – 5.87%1||Undergrad & Graduate||Visit Earnest|
|2.47% – 8.03%4||Undergrad & Graduate||Visit Lendkey|
|2.95% – 6.37%2||Undergrad & Graduate||Visit Laurel Road|
|2.48% – 6.25%5||Undergrad & Graduate||Visit CommonBond|
|2.72% – 8.32%6||Undergrad & Graduate||Visit Citizens|