Millennial women are a force to be reckoned with. The numbers don’t lie. According to a study by Pew Research Center, 46 percent of millennial women who are currently working have earned a college degree, which is a major jump from the previous generation. Beyond that, women are more likely to attend and graduate college than men.
And yet, breaking into the workforce and landing your dream job sometimes feels like an uphill battle. As a millennial woman, the gender pay gap isn’t the only thing that I worry about constantly. If you look closely, you’ll notice that the majority of people who hold higher positions are male. But that doesn’t mean that we can’t break the glass ceiling.
Now more than ever, you need to change the way you job search and get on the right path. Here’s how you can jump-start your dream career.
1. Have your vision laid out BEFORE you start your search.
Forget five years – Picture yourself two years from now. Where are you? What are you doing? If you don’t know what it is you are looking for exactly, your search for a fulfilling job is going to be that much harder. Yes, it’s true that not everyone lands their dream job on the first try. But that doesn’t mean that you have to limit yourself to finding jobs that you know you’ll feel miserable doing. Put positive thoughts out into the universe and it will come back to you, promise!
2. In terms of skills, branching out is a MUST.
Having more than one skill is a major asset. You never know how far a certain skill will take you. Before I became an English teacher, I was a content editor at an online magazine. When I made the jump into my teaching career, my background as a professional writer and editor actually boosted my resume and got me the job! Years later, I get to have the best of both worlds, and teach and write.
3. Speaking of branching out…Network, network, network!
Those three words are the key to scoring your dream job. The world isn’t as big as it seems. Everyone knows someone, which means that you’re more likely to get a way in if you connect with the right people. Create a Linkedin profile or join Facebook groups in your niche. Get your name out there.
4. Don’t ever be afraid to lean on someone who’s traveled your path before.
If there’s one thing that you leave with, it’s this: Having a mentor who can show you the ropes and guide you in the right direction is everything. It doesn’t matter how many years experience (both school and career wise) you have; you will always benefit from someone who’s more experienced than you are and knows the ins and outs of your field. What’s great about having a mentor or coach is that you can essentially cut your job search time in half because they’ve already gone through this same search before and can shed light on what to do.
5. Be confident. Period.
This advice is simple but it’s true. As women, we have been trained to make excuses for our wants, needs, and successes. Now is the time to break away from that. The truth is that you need to start speaking up for your experience and skills; if you don’t build yourself up, no one else is. That project that you totally killed during your internship? Promote it. You trained yourself in social media strategies and now run a super popular Instagram account? Keep talking about it. You can adapt to any situation and learn new skills very quickly? Own it. Don’t ever be afraid to give yourself credit for all of your hard work.
Cassandra is a beauty and women’s health writer. She spends most of her time treating herself to dinner and movie dates, pretending her life is a Marvel comic and figuring out how to keep her makeup on her face. Not necessarily in that order. She blogs about affordable outfits from her favorite movies and TV shows at Onscreencloset.com.