6 Reasons to be Picky About Your First Job Out of College

Let me start out by saying that there’s a difference between being stuck up and being picky. Being picky is knowing where you need to go, how to get there, and what you need to do to get there. Sometimes, that means taking a lower-paying job, doing the grunt work, and working long hours.

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Once you’ve started a role that makes you unhappy, you have two choices. You can quit right away and burn that bridge. Or you can stick with it for a year or two. I’m guessing you’ll want to stick with the latter because within that year or two things can change for the better. And because we all know that it’s a bad idea to burn bridges.

You need to be picky to prevent yourself from ending up in either position.

It’s important to be picky about your first job out of college because you might discover:

1. Your expectations for a role don’t always match the reality of the role

If you get a job and find out that it’s not what you thought it’d be, you’ll be stuck there until another opportunity comes along.

How to prevent this: Download the Productive Job-Hunting Game Plan to be sure you are setting yourself up for a successful job hunt.

2. The job may not challenge you enough

6 reasons to be picky about your first job out of college-t2

Not only will you get bored, but you’ll have a hard time marketing yourself for another job

How to prevent this: Go on as many informational interviews as possible

3. The tasks might not get you closer to your dream job

On a related note, if your role doesn’t have tasks or responsibilities that teach you something for your next step, you are wasting your time. And you’ll have a hard time marketing yourself for another job.

How to prevent this: You have to network. Get to know others with the same job title and ask them where they see their career going. Ask people with your dream job for advice.

4. You may not be able to grow at the company

On the other hand, maybe you are being challenged by your tasks. That’s a good thing. But if you find that you can’t move up or to a different role, you’ll have to find work elsewhere later down the line.

How to prevent this: Ask specific questions during the interview process and reach out to current employees.

5. You might find that you disagree with the values of the company

This will make it hard to get things done. We like to feel like what we are doing is purposeful. If you disagree with the values a company is promoting, you’ll need to spend time convincing yourself that what you are doing is good. Step 1 of this blog post to help you define your core values.

How to prevent this: Ask specific questions during the interview process and reach out to current employees.

6. Job hopping can be a red flag

As a marketing student, you may have heard of the “it’s cheaper to retain customers than it is to always find new customers.” The same goes for employees – it’s cheaper to retain employees than it is to have high employee turnover. That’s why, many recruiters and hiring managers view job hopping as a red flag.

How to prevent this: Do your research on the types of jobs you are applying to and company cultures of the places you are applying to.

So what now?

Now you know all of the reasons you should be picky during your first post-college job hunt. What now?

If you are still looking for that first job after college.

Check out these resources to help you during your job hunt:

Or let’s say you have already jumped for that first job and you feel unhappy.

Before you leave a job, you owe it to yourself to try to make things work. These blog posts will help you out:

Struggling to land your first job?

It’s possible you skipped a few steps in the job-hunting process. Get the free productive job-hunting game plan to figure out what you’re missing.