As a student who is a year away from entering the job market, anxiety and questions related to my personal capabilities and fields I want to work for are constantly resurfacing in conversations on the dinner table and otherwise.
Our education system, as per the latest data available, leaves only 15% of the total literate lot employable by the end of their university education. The situation is grim but in situations like the one we are experiencing, we need to put our best foot forward and learn ways to equip ourselves other than just complaining about the broken system we are a part of.
Companies of today are looking for candidates with a lot more than excellence in understanding factual and theoretical data, someone who has the basic communication skills, leadership qualities, training and aptitude for creative and lateral thinking, etc would be preferred in comparison to someone who is just good in the topic he/she specializes in.
In fields such as humanities, specializations are no longer a requisite, the requirement stated in most cases is the ability to change and adapt to projects with drastically different themes, which makes us realize the need for us to look at issues that we cater to in totality and not in isolation.
The first step in preparation, in my view, is by socializing with the professionals of the field. An open discussion between the prospective employees and employers helps in reducing the gap that exists and helps in ensuring a strong workforce in the future.
Linkedin is a social media platform that has been working with these very principles in mind and is therefore currently thriving.
There are certain unwritten suggestions that have helped me navigate and prioritize amongst the heap of knowledge that this platform has to provide.
One should primarily be a part of a few but well-reputed, engaging, and occupied groups of the domain they are interested in. Through these groups, one can infer the leading and other institutions that are working in the field and by following them they can then send requests to the members of the institution that aspire to be a part of or are heavily in awe of.
After establishing contact with members of these esteemed institutions, one can very strategically engage in conversations with them either by posing interesting questions through posts or by directly engaging with them through the personal chat feature.
However, it must be noted that these professionals on LinkedIn are highly skilled and busy and there will be times when they don’t respond to your messages for days because of their work commitments, and that’s okay. Always keep your options open and don’t depend on a single person for guidance but a bunch of them. As far as my personal experience is concerned, people are more than interested in rendering help to freshers here and one must use this opportunity to the maximum.
Other than working professionals, the platform also helps you connect with other students sharing the same interests as you, this then helps one realize the diversity that exists in the same field of work and helps one engage in a healthy exchange of ideas, opportunities, and available future choices.
Linkedin makes you available to a diverse cohort and being on the platform and not engaging with the people around there in the ways made possible, is a waste of resources and time.