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5 SIMPLE THINGS EMPLOYERS WANT FROM FRESH GRADUATES

You’ve seen the memes. Employers who want you to have 20 years of experience when you’re only 23. But is that really how it works?

The memes are hilarious, but they’re not really accurate (employers aren’t that bad at math). Having said that, it can be difficult for fresh grads like you to figure out what employers want. And it’s a problem if students don’t know how to make themselves employable from the start.

Well, we’re here to clear that doubt and give you some tips on how to impress the people who give you that sweet, sweet salary.

The Faculty of Business and Management hosted a webinar on this topic, and invited Mr Calvin Chai, Marketing Director of EC Moulding (M) Sdn. Bhd to share what employers like him expect from young graduates. Here’s what he told us:

Plan

Fail to plan and you’re planning to fail. When you start planning, figure out your end goals and where you want to be. Once you know what you plan to do, you can figure out what companies you want to join.

This will help you find the right fit. Employers are looking for graduates who know what they want, and who want to be at their company.   

Productive

When you’re hired, strive to be productive by being proactive (more on this later).  Be useful; be a problem solver for the company. Have a mindset of continuous learning. The more you learn, the more productive you become.

Proactive

You need to be proactive in creating networks and connections. That means you need to mingle and talk to one another to know each other’s expertise. And once your knowledge increases, you should ask for more responsibilities. Continuously upgrading your skills and knowledge by enrolling in courses that will benefit you and your company.

Positivity

Something every student or employee should have is a positive attitude. It’s something that should start at the university level by adopting healthy life habits.

In your job, it’s inevitable that you’ll come across challenges and obstacles. Try your best to be someone who finds solutions and remains positive. Don’t dwell on problems, because they don’t get solved that way.

Be prepared for challenges, remain positive, and embrace change.

Practise Your Interpersonal/Tech Skills

No person is an island. To do well at your job, you have to know how to work with people, talk to people, and learn from people.

The best way to do so is to expand your horizons in university. Join clubs, activities and make new friends.

Along the same lines, you should also be tech-savvy. Understand the basics of social media, IT and messaging apps. Chances are that you’ll need them for work-related purposes.

There are more invaluable tips that came out of this webinar goldmine. Mr Calvin also responded to questions on how students should prepare to become entrepreneurs. His advice?

  • Start working for potential competitors in the field first to learn the know-hows.
  • Sign up for  business courses such as marketing, finance, and accounting may be beneficial to the young entrepreneur.
  • When preparing a business plan, make connections with other people and devoting time and effort to reading business publications.
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