4 career mistakes to avoid at the start of your career

4 career mistakes to avoid at the start of your career

  • Published on Friday 20 March, 2015
  • 3 min. to read


Starting out in your career can be exciting or terrifying. There’s no easy way to quickly learn the ins and outs of building a career, but there are a number of common mistakes you can avoid if you simply look out for them.

1. Networking only within your company
Once we land a job, most of us become part of a new work group. Learn to extend your network to people outside the group— in part because other connections are how to learn more about yourself, and in part because it will give you more potential career paths when it comes time to look for a new position. The sooner you start, the better — having access to a wide range of job options and learning experiences at a young age is invaluable.

2. Quitting a job too soon
There’s nothing wrong with quitting a job as long as you’ve thoroughly considered and understood the benefits and repercussions. Too many young professionals face a major obstacle in their line of work and immediately think of quitting to solve the problem. For example, one tough assignment or one annoying coworker could be enough to push them out the door. Instead of quitting your job anytime you face a hardship, do a thorough pro/con evaluation. Take everything into consideration — you may not like your boss, but if you’re learning great skills, it may be worth sticking it out for as long as you can.

3. Failing to invest in yourself
Understanding yourself and realizing what motivates you is important. Finding ways to make more money or gain more status might seem like good ideas to move up in your career, but the better option is always to find ways to improve yourself. Invest in yourself by attending classes and taking the time to learn and develop new skills.

4. Forgetting about the piggy bank and spending every dollar you have
For the first job it can be thrilling to get a real paycheck and instantly dream of the next swanky bar, restaurant, or chic outfit to spend it on. Budgeting is a real skill, and you want the zeros in your bank account to come after another number, not be the only number.

Avoiding these mistakes alone won’t guarantee you a straight path to a career you’ll love forever, but they will help you alleviate some of the growing pains that come with entering the professional world.

Stay flexible, learn from your mistakes, and remain focused on your goals.

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