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10 tips to find a job or career you actually like after high school

We’re all different and finding a career that feels perfectly you often isn’t as easy as one, two three 🤓

Some people know exactly what they want to do after high school and have an unnerving confidence in their choice – that’s wonderful, but don’t feel the pressure to find your “one true dream career” right away 💭

Usually it takes time, energy and effort to find the career or job for you. Here are some tips on how to get there and find a job you love.

It’s all about experimentation

How do you know what being an engineer is like if you’ve never spoken to an engineer? Our absolute top tip for finding your career path is to take different careers and roles for a test drive. Think try-before-you-buy, but more like, try-before-you-spend-five-years-studying-for-a-career-you’re-not-sure-about. Get out there, try things, speak to people and then feel certain before assigning your career north star.

Think about what you’re passionate about

“Find your passion and you’ll never work a day in your life”... look, if only we could play video games for a living (well, actually you can… anyway). Uncover what you’re passionate about, aline it with your values and find a career path to suit. We’ve written a whole blog about finding your passion over here.

Take a short course

If you’ve heard the term “soft skills'' thrown around, it’s for a good reason. These skills like communication, self-awareness etc are transferable across industries making them super valuable to any 21st-century employer. By upskilling on these #lifeskills you’ll learn more about yourself along the way. And knowing more about yourself = picking the right career path.

Find a mentor 

Sadly the saying “it's who you know – not what you know” gets thrown around a lot. And when you’re fresh to the working world having someone who knows the industry can help you get your foot on the ladder. A mentor can share advice, find job opps and potentially open the doors.

RELATED BLOG: Should I find a career mentor? (yes, and here’s why)

Take a careers quiz

We LOVE helping young people find career clarity and our super fun quizzes are one quick tool to find answers while having fun. If you’re interested in engineering, the future of food, saving the environment, rail careers, or are just looking for a pathway, try one of our epic quizzes.

Prep your resume

You don’t need experience to start crafting an amazing resume. And if you’re a high school student or studying at university, the process of drafting a resume can be an exercise that helps you think deeper about your future dreams.

Get work experience

Get yo’self some real experience. It’s something you can add to your resume and there are so many options, such as our totally free Virtual Work Experiences that give you the chance to try-before-you-buy into your future career (plus you gain valuable experience to display on your CV).

Take a summer job

From volunteering to teaching online to taking an internship to launching your own freelance business, there are dozens of types of summer jobs you could pick up to start learning about the type of work you want to commit to long term. Discover some of our favourite cool jobs to get you through the long, hot summer.

Start a side hustle 

Every “side hustle” has its benefits, and we’re not just talking about money 🤑 In a recent focus group, HR professionals spoke about the power of the side hustle and how gaining experiences outside of your education can boost your career. So, start thinking about how extracurricular activities, freelancing and upskilling can push you ahead of the pack.

RELATED BLOG: Why having a side hustle will get you ahead in your career

Reflect on your journey so far

Having a career is a marathon, not a sprint, so don’t feel the urge to race to the finish line. If you’ve tried some of the above tips, take time to reflect on your journey so far. You could journal or write down what you liked or didn’t like about the experiences you’ve had so far, and brainstorm what to try next.

Here at Grandshake we’re all about helping young people find their pathway after high school – whether that’s university, a trade or gap year. We’ve got heaps of tools to help you explore your career options. Check out our sweet Virtual Work Experiences, short soft skill programs, our career quizzes and blogs. Did we mention everything is freeeee?

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