I have spoken to college and high school classes on occasion to impart my great wisdom to them. Primarily, I address the issue of getting a job after school and how to approach the process.
As a service to college graduates particularly, I am sharing my advice to students who have completed their studies and are wondering what the heck to do now.
I seriously doubt that many high school students read this column, so I’ll leave it up to the parents or grandparents to pass along this important message.
• Don’t expect to have any credibility when you leave school unless you earn it. Prove it. Believe or not, no one has been waiting for you to get out of school (unless you’re a skilled professional such as health care provider or, better yet, plumber, electrician or mechanic — they will always have jobs).
• Nobody owes you a job or even a decent salary. You should be grateful to get a job and get paid while you learn how to do something. Far too many kids expect to earn what they might be earning in three to four years.
• You’d better have done some sort of internship before you talk to me or I won’t be interested. The ones who have done an internship or two will have a definite advantage. And oftentimes whoever you intern for will hire you.
• Be ready to work harder than everyone else. The early bird gets the worm and all that. Tell your prospective employer you are willing to work your tail off, including weekends. I once had a client who told me "6 o’clock comes twice a day." That means working 12 hours a day. You’re young; you can handle it.
• You need to have a good understanding of everything. And you must have the ability to write. Those with strong communication skills will advance faster, regardless of what field they are in.
The more you know about everything, the better your chance of surviving and thriving.
• It is unlikely you will get to specialize in a "niche." You probably won’t even get a job in the area in which you prepared.
• Buy some interview clothes. Look presentable.
• Watch what you put on Facebook and Twitter. I have known people who didn’t get a job or have lost a job because of Facebook postings. Take off all of the "party pics" that shows you acting like an idiot.
• Before your interview, study the company’s website, literature and competition.
• After your interview, send a handwritten note or letter thanking them for their time and consideration.
• Cute won’t keep your job.
Good luck out there. You’ll need it.
Where more than wind comes sweeping down the plain
It has been heartbreaking to watch residents of our sister state go through what they have been through this week. Granted, we have had our share of tornadoes, but not like Oklahoma. It is overwhelming. I don’t know how you rebuild so many times. All we can do is pray for them and help where we can. Send your contribution to redcross.org. Here’s to Oklahoma being OK again.
When greed exceeds intelligence
I am sure that you have watched in amazement as your state treasurer, Martha Shoffner, demonstrated her complete lack of judgment, ethics and morals as her "pie-gate" scheme brought her run in politics to an end. Good riddance, Ms. Shoffner. Enjoy your time in prison. Your brand of arrogance is not welcome in Arkansas.
See you on the Boulevard.
Neal Moore owns a creative consulting firm, Neal Moore Creative. He has lived in Maumelle over 10 years. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Facebook or on Twitter, @kneelmore.