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My First Week in a Graduate Job

Beth Watson Student Life

For almost every student, the last few weeks of university are a stressful time, bogged down with coursework and exams, not to mention the added pressure of trying to formulate some kind of plan for entering the real world again.

June -23-16_Beths -First -Week _In PageI was definitely feeling the strain of final year and in need of a serious pick-me-up when I got an unexpected telephone call – I had secured my dream graduate job! Waving goodbye to the month’s worth of lazy days I had planned, I started work the following week. Want to know how I got on? Keep reading!

Expecting to be a bag of nerves on my very first day as a Digital Marketing Analyst, I was pleasantly surprised to wake up feeling calm and optimistic. The stress of handing in a final project, moving cities and embarking on an exciting career had occupied my mind as of late, so I didn’t have a chance to think too much about what I was letting myself in for.

Arriving at work, I immediately felt at home, which is probably because I was confident in the decision I had made to take this job in a marketing and design agency that had made me feel at ease from the very first interview. It was important to me to make a good impression, so I shook everybody’s hand, flashed a big smile and tried to remember as many names as possible. Before I knew it, it was time to start working.

With plenty of work experience under my belt, I had a good understanding of what was expected of me. For those that haven’t experienced the working world, it’s definitely worth completing a placement or two before you hunt for the real thing. A working day can come as a shock to the system compared with university life!

I quickly got stuck into some exciting projects that really tested my skills and knowledge. Having been hired on the basis that I could add some creative flair to a team of web developers and digital analysts, there was still a lot I had to learn on the technology front.

Nevertheless, within a day or two I was working on some pretty technological stuff, tracking and creating campaigns for social media, monitoring pay per click advertising strategies and optimising client websites for the best search engine results. It was all new to me, but I asked loads of questions, wrote tonnes of notes and quickly began to pick it all up. 

Over the course of the week, I slowly began to introduce myself to the agency’s clients. I believe that it’s very important to build up good relations with anybody you work for, as it demonstrates a level of professionalism and maturity. It’s common to hear horror stories of demanding clients in the communications industry, but luckily for me, my clients were all friendly and happy to be working alongside me, which gave my confidence a boost. I finally felt like a real professional!

Speaking of good relationships, my advice to anybody embarking on their first job is to make an effort with your colleagues. After all, you’re going to be spending a lot of time with them from now on! Whether it was a joke here and there, the offer of a drink or asking the occasional question about their interests and hobbies, I made sure to interact with the people around me which seriously helped me to settle in.

If I had to say what the most difficult part about my first week was, I would 100% say my schedule. Three years at university meant I was used to choosing when I worked, what time I wanted to get out of bed, when I wanted to eat and how long I could work on a project for. In a bustling office, you’re confined to a strict set of rules and it can all get very tiring, so I was definitely ready for the weekend.

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