Your First Job: Ten Critical Things That Nobody Tells You
Starting your first career job is exciting as hell when you are in your early twenties. It was certainly more exciting before the pandemic relegated everyone to pajamas and annoying zoom calls. The business world functioned just fine for decades using speakerphones. There is no need for us to view our coworkers inner weirdness, in the morning.
If getting into the business world was your goal, then starting a new job is a big deal! For one, you get to quit your temporary job for a chance to put on your big boy pants, draw your sword and prove to the world that you have what it takes.
For me, I was completely bummed out when I accepted my first corporate job as a programmer for a large medical software company. I had been working for a very cool landscape construction company, which I loved! It was hard work, outdoors and dirty, with a bunch of badass dudes. But it didn’t make sense to be running a jackhammer in downtown Boston in 95 degree weather, after I busted my hump to get a mathematics degree at Syracuse University.
I spent over 20 years as an executive in corporate America before starting my own business. I didn’t enjoy much of it and I stayed too long, but I sure can provide some advice to help you on your journey!
Ten Things About Your First Job That Nobody Tells You
(in no particular order)
1. Your Salary is a Reflection on You, Nobody Else
You are not working hourly any more at the local sandwich shop. You are a paid professional and your salary is indicative of your experience, your position and your ability to negotiate with your new employer. If someone else makes more money in the same position as you, then good for them. It has no bearing on your situation. They simply negotiated better. It’s best if you don’t know or seek to know what anyone else makes at your new company.
Also, don’t tell anyone your salary, coworkers or friends. Let them guess, it’s none of their damn business and it’s all of your business. Plus they will always expect you to pick up drinks if you make more money.