I just graduated with no job. Now what?

When you’re a freshly-minted grad with your degree or diploma in hand, what do you do when the crickets are chirping and the job prospects seem BLEAK?

Our Twitter #careerchat took up the challenge and came up with great solutions. Find one (or more) that works for you!

Key takeaways:

  • DaveYouTern: If you haven’t already… start networking. Note I said networking – building relationships. Networking isn’t “gimme a job!”
  • ComeRecommended: Don’t be afraid to take time off to figure out your goals, but make sure to actually DO something like travel, volunteer, intern.
  • ALKUJess: Staying busy and proving that you have a good work ethic in any field will be beneficial when you try to find a career.
  • myFootpath: Maximize your face-to-face networking by meeting contacts on FB/Twitter/LinkedIn BEFOREHAND. Know who you want to talk to.
  • WomensAlly: Tell FRANK: F=friends R=relatives, A=acquaintances N=neighbors K=kids.


Job seeker? Just want to get ahead in your career?

Join our Twitter #careerchat Tuesdays @ 12 PM CT to talk about everything from friending your boss on Facebook to personal branding to how to get a call back from recruiter.

How to join: Go to Tweetchat.com and follow the hashtag “careerchat” at noon CT every Tuesday!

Chat Transcript:

Q1: So you graduated from college with no job, now what?

  • CleanJourney: First find your interest – go to search.twitter.com – and search the words of YOUR interest – get in on the convo!
  • kimincuse: No job? Use the Advanced Search tool on LinkedIn to find alumni in your prospective field. Connect and network!
  • AvidCareerist: Graduating with no job is more normal than not. Don’t despair!
  • KCDEE5: what is your career field? check out internships, linkedIn groups, and if all else fails go to snagajob.com for a PT job
  • ComeRecommended: Take some time to figure out what you REALLY want to do…then create a plan and go for it.
  • DaveYouTern: If you haven’t already… start networking. Note I said networking – building relationships. Networking isn’t “gimme a job!”
  • CleanJourney: Key is engage with peeps in your field of interest…maybe flip some burgers while U network in (McD’s -16K apps in MA!!).
  • SaleStartAbby: Set goals for what u want out of a job and don’t take the 1st job ur offered if it isnt perfect just to have a “paycheck”
  • ALKUJess: Use the university career services! Practice interviewing and use any alumni as resources
  • ComeRecommended: Dont be afraid to take time off to figure out ur goals but make sure to actually DO something like travel, volunteer, intern etc
  • ChangeWisdom: People don’t resist change they resist loss. Get curious…about your future!
  • Careerbright: Look up the local job listings, explore the ‘hidden’ job market, and don’t focus on one goal -be flexible
  • Careerbright: Even doing something on your own adds on to your portfolio, I know a grad who’s developing website while looking for work
  • bbenishek: Even working in a factory, learn about people, time mgmt, etc.
  • CleanJourney: If you are enthusiastic, energetic, focused – and willing to work for little or no cash – the doors are available- go open them
  • myFootpath: The first thing I did when I graduated was start leveraging the power of my alumni network. It was a HUGE help.
  • AnneMessenger: First job = babysitting. Still use some of those skill sets today!
  • AvidCareerist: One client had an alum refer her in, record her practice interview, etc.

Q2: If a full time job isn’t in the immediate future, what kind of job should I look for?

  • myFootpath: If you’re taking an entry-level or part-time job, try to take on that has opportunity for growth and movement.
  • KCDEE5: you should look for any pt job that is related to your college field of study. If at all possible
  • RecruitingDaily: even a volunteer job of internship w/. no pay can really open up doors to land that first job
  • LesleyMWeiss: I took a job way outside my interest area but I told them what my interest were and they helped me stretch the job
  • bizMebizgal: There is nothing wrong with interning for the summer. It might just end up being full time.
  • ComeRecommended: Try to work within your industry, even if it’s volunteering or interning. You’ll still be learning/networking that way.
  • AnneMessenger: No FT job immediately? Find something to build skills & network, as well as put $ into pocket.
  • ALKUJess: Staying busy and proving that you have a good work ethic in any field will be beneficial when you try to find a career
  • WomensAlly: Don’t be afraid to ask for help. You’ll be surprised where it may lead you
  • CleanJourney: Latch on to mentors, advisors, friends with good ideas – be ACTIVE!!
  • bbenishek: Be sure to treat a temp/intern job like a “real” job. If you make a mistake, fix it; don’t leave early if work to be done
  • myFootpath: Honestly, I think having one horrible job after graduation isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It can build character.
  • bbenishek: Get some gumption, do what you need to, don’t just roll over and let the days pass.
  • KCDEE5: “Reach out to temp agencies” some companies only hire temp-to-perm
  • bizMebizgal: The jobs are out there, you just need to know the right people to get them. Job market is all about who you know!
  • AvidCareerist: Friends took reception and admin “foot in door” jobs. Now in 6-figure professional roles.

 Q3. What are the top 3 things all graduates should be doing?

  • TSpagnola: Network, network, network…as it has been said…jobs are out there
  • myFootpath: College grads, it’s not enough to post your resume on linked in. You have to actively reach out and network. Follow/Friend/RT
  • SaleStartAbby: Complete their LinkedIn profile, make TAILORED resumes/cover letters, lots of networking! @eventbrite is a gr8 resource!
  • Brand_uu: 1. understand strengths 2. believe you are skilled and 3. network
  • ALKUJess: building their identity through social media, networking, internships, volunteering anything to demonstrate their character
  • AnneMessenger: Grads’ 3 top to dos? Get clear on goals, sketch out job search plan, work the plan.
  • kimincuse: New grads should 1. Build a LinkedIn profile 2. Learn how to use it 3. Make sure friends/family KNOW you are looking
  • myFootpath: Jobseekers have to realize their resume might be one of hundreds. Networking is what moves your resume to the top of the pile.
  • CleanJourney: Find a great place TO network – gym, weddings, fund raisers, events with downtime (BB games, boat races, golf)- ask Qs!
  • WomensAlly: tell FRANK: F=friends R=relatives, A=acquaintances N=neighbors, K=kids
  • CleanJourney: Great places to Network online – Twitterchats, Linked In Groups, Assn Groups, StartUp Groups…
  • myFootpath: Maximize ur face-to-face networking by meeting contacts on FB/Twitter/LI BEFOREHAND. Know who u want to talk to
  • miss_smiley10: Networking, saving money, creating 5yr career goals
  • CleanJourney: Resumes, Profiles, etc – are good to have – but asking Qs of people that know the people is the Key!
  • DaveYouTern: 1. Network. 2. Build transferrable “soft” skills. 3. Attend the webinar series that starts tomorrow: http://dld.bz/YTsz
  • Brand_uu: Talking to professionals can be intimidating for some students, they aren’t used to that kind of interaction!
  • AvidCareerist: Don’t forget to network with high school alums who were ahead of you. They’re first level hiring managers now.
  • CleanJourney: Empire Ave is a Gr8 Place to go to network – online activity is a gr8 equalizer for the timid
  • bbenishek: Talking to people in your head all day (so to speak) can help introverts talk to them offline.
  • AvidCareerist: One way to “get over it.” Write a #networking script and practice w/your mom or best friend.
  • FreshTransition: You are selling yourself. Manage you search & network w/ the same rigor that salespeople use to manage their sales pipeline
  • bizMebizgal: I actually take many clients to networking events so I can be their safety net. You have to force people to be uncomfortable.
  • FreshTransition Follow-up is key. Network & follow-up. Apply & follow-up. Stay engaged w/ yr network – they’re ur valuable job search currency
  • AvidCareerist: Uncomfort zones? Take one step there. Still alive? Take another!

Have any tips of your own? Add them in the comments.

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