Finding Your First Job After University

You’ve spent most of your life studying, and you’re excited to find your first full time job. You might have heard a few different ideas about what to do when looking for a job, what salary to expect or overall what your first job might look like.

If you feel lost about how to start your career and want to be told how it is, then you should probably keep reading.

manage your expectations

You probably have a very nice idea of what you want to do with all that you’ve learnt. Perhaps to reach an executive role,  open your own business or have a stable long-term career that makes you happy. Your first job is probably not going to be all that though, so let’s be realistic 🙂 You’re there to learn the basics, absorb the knowledge from around you and put in the work to take you one step closer to where you want to be. Don’t be put off if you’re not receiving promotions within the first 6 months or handling more ‘administrative’ tasks, you’ll work your way up with the right attitude


When looking for your first job, don’t forget to think of the bigger picture. What is it you want to achieve in the short/long term? Explore as many options as possible before committing to that one role and keep your objectives in mind – the best salary doesn’t always mean the best opportunity, evaluate your options carefully

learn as much as possible

It’s very common to have loads of exciting and fresh ideas on how to do things differently in your first job and make sure you find an employer that nurtures this side of you and not squash it. That being said, be a sponge more than a change agent at first. The people around you probably have quite a bit to teach you & know a thing or two about how to get the job done – find the right balance between absorbing/learning and suggesting. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking you know better (trust me, I’ve been there)

age is but a number

Although you might be young or relatively ‘inexperienced’ in the eyes of corporate, that doesn’t mean you can’t bring a lot to the table and move your way up. Don’t feel intimidated by perhaps being the youngest in the office – with the right attitude (and results) you can start making a difference, managing a team or whatever else motivates you.

salary expectations

You may feel that a certain level of education means you must ask for a particular salary. Unfortunately, a Masters’s Degree with absolutely no relevant experience doesn’t mean you can automatically ask for €30,000 in the private sector. Start out humble and work your way up – your first job will help you put practical skills to match your academic knowledge then trust me, the money will come.

All in all, don’t be fearful of looking for your first job – no employer is expecting you to be perfect, but they will expect the right attitude and expectations to help you grow in your career.

If you’re looking for more career support, speak to us and we’ll set you on the right track.

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