Friday, April 25, 2008

10 Years From Now - A Graduate's Guide to Interviewing

Are you ready for your interview Orlando?photo by Stitch

Florida is already feeling the heat wave that the impending summer brings. Maybe it also has to do with the fact that UCF is just about wrapped up with finals and the public schools are starting to get summer vacation jitters around 4th period!

With the end of each school year, we get a plethora of graduates who are gearing up to enter the work force. These graduates have put in their time studying, making the grade and gearing up for the 'real world.'

You new graduates are getting ready to make a major change in your lifestyle. One that went from quick transition to quick transition to now "life long." (Well, not always but a life long career).

One question that always comes your way in an interview is; "where do you see yourself in 10 years?"

The problem with this question for millennials and recent graduates is that we (I am included in this group) have never thought of our lives in increments of 10 years. We have lived in 3-5 year spurts ever since Middle School. Our transitions happen when we graduate into the next level. When you are a senior in high school and you get the question of what do you plan to do next, your answer may be; "going to college for a few years and then who knows!"

There are exceptions to this rule, but for the majority we have never thought long term career status. Most of the jobs we help were summer, part-time, internship or a job I did while in college.

So my task for you is when speaking to a hiring manager and you are popped with that question, be honest and tell the manager that you have been brought up in a system that allows for change every 3-5 years.

Sam Davidson from Employee Evolution says it like this:
Because of the educational system we grew up in, we were taught how to go from novice to expert in four years. The daunting hallways of 9th grade became friendly confines by senior year. And that gigantic quad our freshman year of college had seemingly shrunk by the time we got our degree. So, we’ve gotten pretty good at learning the ropes and playing the game in the amount of time between Olympics.
Most of us can't see past Friday night, and that's okay. Be honest with the interviewing manager and they will appreciate your outlook.

And remember that at the end of the day, this is just one question in a long hiring process. Write a killer resume, make a superb first impression and answer questions with confidence and landing your first post graduation "real job" will become a reality.

Happy hunting Orlando!

-Greg Rollett

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