Entering the workplace as a young professional can be daunting. Working with far more experienced, older professionals, may make you feel that you won’t be taken seriously or that your voice won’t be heard. Here are a few ways to help you stop this from happening.
Firstly, don’t immediately say YES to a job. You may want to take every opportunity as soon as it appears and show that you’re keen, but before you agree to take something on, ask relevant questions. It will make whoever asked you think that you’re eager to have all you need to make sure you are going to do the job well.
Avoid being the office cliché. Being the youngest in the office, it is already hard to have your voice heard and your ideas respected, so don’t make it less likely to happen by embarrassing yourself. So, on work nights out or after works drinks, don’t get excessively drunk. (We all know how that ends!) Don’t gossip about other colleagues and do NOT date them. It’s best to keep personal calls, texting and updating social media to a minimum while on the clock, and also keep your desk organised and tidy.
Use your youth to your advantage. You may just be out of university or college and co-workers can see this as an advantage because it’s most likely you have the most up to date knowledge regarding the field you’re working in. Sharing your new insights can gain you some respect in the office and co-workers may soon be coming to you for what you know!
Something that is in your control, as a young professional in a new job, is time. It wouldn’t hurt to turn up to work or a meeting a few minutes earlier, and it will impress co-workers if you hand in reports or assignments a day early. Even the simplest of things such as replying to emails and returning phone calls will boost your reputation amongst staff.
Finally, dress to impress. Adding a touch of professionalism to your wardrobe can help you gain that respect you want from your co-workers. Dressing in a professional manner doesn’t mean you need to change your style; you can apply your own flair to the professional wardrobe!
Most importantly, don’t think that you won’t be taken seriously in your new job, you were offered it for a reason, because you were the perfect candidate for the role!