Blog
28-May-2020
Advice for College Graduates

This year is a strange year for all of you college graduates.  You have worked so hard to get your degree and are ready to get out there into the work place, but we are in the middle of a worldwide pandemic.  Trust me, I can relate.

On September 11, 2001 the United States came to an abrupt halt.  A terrorist attack destroyed the Twin Towers in NYC , the Pentagon was also hit, and a hijacking led to the crash of flight 93.  The dotcom bubble burst and I was about to graduate. This is my story. I hope it gives you a moment to pause, and realize that the year 2020 is not lost but brimming with possibilities.

I got my degree in Hospitality Management, and like today, people were not traveling much.  I was working for a hotel in San Francisco while going to school, so I had a job,  however staying in San Francisco was not what I wanted for my career.  I wanted to move to Southern California and work in Santa Barbara.  I even went down on spring break with a couple of suits and a folder full of resumes, stayed with a friend, and  spoke to every luxury hotel in the area at the time.  I got a few interviews, but soon found out that I wouldn’t be able to afford living there on the wages they were offering.  I headed back to San Francisco, finished school, and to my good fortune I applied for a role in my current hotel and was promoted to Assistant Manager.  That promotion led me to NYC and a role in a larger luxury hotel. I stayed there for four years, and remained with the company for eight. This was an incredible learning experience.

Obviously I didn’t stay in the hotel field. I am now in recruiting and I love what I do.  I was able to use many of my experiences and the skills that I learned in the hotel industry to help me become a successful recruiter.  I have been doing it for over 8 years now and it has given me the life I truly enjoy.

What do you want as a 2020 college graduate?  Are you willing to take a risk? Are you willing to step forward and go after what you want?  Change is inevitable, and  how we do business is changing dramatically. Are you ready?  These skills and attributes will help you secure your future:

  1. Adaptability: The world as we know it is transforming itself. You must adapt.
  2. Research: What do you know about the company you are applying to and the job they are offering? Do you know how to research?  It may be required for this type of work. It will always be a useful skill.
  3. Preparedness: What about that resume? Does it reflect previous jobs, volunteerism, internships, sports, entrepreneurial efforts, college courses?
  4. Communications:  Employers can teach you the skills they want you to have, but they don’t teach you how to communicate. Verbal, face to face, electronic, and written communication are all equally important.
  5. Independence: Employers don’t want to babysit.  Are you reliable, on time, diligent? Can you problem solve?
  6. Performance: Once you have landed the job (even if it isn’t the dream job), show your potential.  It may well be the step toward the job you’ve been dreaming of. You HAVE to work hard.  After all, you can’t be CEO overnight.

As a recruiter, I am here to help any of you who are looking at administrative/operational roles.  Just reach out to me at any time.  My email is lacy@capeoplesearch.com.