Tips for Surviving in the Workplace if You’re a Recent Grad

Making the transition from the classroom to the working world can be challenging, as the culture and expectations are very different. Fortunately, you can navigate your new workplace and build a positive reputation as long as you do the very same things you did to excel in education: research and preparation. Set yourself up for professional success with these tips for surviving in the workplace if you’re a recent grad: 

Have the Right Mindset  

Don’t let your ambition to achieve your career goals inadvertently damage your professional reputation. It is crucial to have the right mindset  by being patient and willing to pay your dues and earn more responsibility over time. Be intentional in performing to your best, even at the seemingly most minor or inconsequential of tasks.  

Ask Questions  

Get your professional life off on the right foot by establishing good workplace habits. Don’t feel like you are supposed to know everything – your colleagues and manager understand you are learning and gaining experience. If you are ever unclear on expectations or processes, ask questions and take notes for reference. Otherwise, you risk causing yourself unnecessary stress and losing self-confidence by making preventable mistakes.  

Be Observant of Cultural Norms  

Not only is the workplace very different from the classroom in terms of overall culture, but each individual workplace has its own specific cultural norms. When you’re first starting out working as a recent grad, prioritize being observant of cultural norms. Take note of how colleagues interact and just the overall sense of how things are done (i.e., casual versus more conservative) at your new employer so you know how to handle situations in the accepted manner.  

Continue Learning  

Your education shouldn’t end just because you have graduated. Ensure you are devoting yourself to continuing to learn and develop new skills on a consistent basis. This could be anything from hard (i.e., technical) skills you need to perform your job, as well as soft (i.e., personal) skills. Check out webinars, read books and articles, follow tutorials, etc. as part of your professional development at every stage of your career.  

Get to Know People  

The relationships you build with your professional contacts have the potential to benefit you greatly in both the short term (such as receiving valuable mentorship or consideration for promotions) as well as the long term (such as receiving positive references or job leads). Get to know people in your workplace – introduce yourself, show interest, volunteer to help, etc. You don’t need to be the most outgoing or charismatic – simply being sincere will help you connect with your colleagues and make your workplace experience more satisfactory.  

Explore New Opportunities 

Are you ready to find a new job as a recent grad? Team up with IFG to find the roles that are the best fit for you. We are a top accounting and finance employment agency serving employers throughout Canada and the United States and can serve as a helpful resource to guide you as you launch your career. Contact us today to meet with an IFG Business Partner.