1. Go for training and gain proficiency in the following - Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint. Aim for intermediate or advanced level. You have an entire year to sort this out.
2. Put together a functional CV. By now,you should be able to have information to cover one and a half or two pages.
3. NYSC shouldn’t come under “education” in your CV. It should be under “Work Experience” and the achievements you recorded on the tasks or roles which you functioned in should be clearly stated. Show achievements, don’t list responsibilities.
4. Now is the time to have a great LinkedIn profile. And don’t just put “student” or “looking for opportunities” on your header. If you intend to pursue a career in HR, rather put “Emerging HR Professional.”
5. Now is the time to volunteer, as it serves as proof that you’re a leader who’s proactive and interested in paying it forward and developing society. It will also add content to your CV and LinkedIn profile, and you’ll gain critical skills which are needed in the workplace.
6. Clean up your social media accounts. Your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn is probably the first thing a potential employer will see, even before your NYSC discharge certificate and degree. Your 1st Class or 2.1 won’t mean much if your social media profiles tell a different story from whom you say you are.
7. Now is the time to register for a couple of online courses. They come under “Continuous Professional Development” just after “Education” on your CV.
8. No matter your area of expertise or what you studied, Project Management, Communication and Presentation skills will certainly make you stand out from others. Work on developing them.
9. Network - this is essential. Attend events, conferences, workshops, seminars, etc. These relationships will come in handy during the course of your personal and professional journey.
10. The journey ahead will be tough and rough - get yourself a Mentor. They’ll help to add clarity to your journey.
And remember, it’s not about accumulating “paper qualifications.” Get skills instead, cos at the end of the day - Capacity Trumps Titles.
©️Oyindamola Johnson, 2018.