Many people want to find their dream job; it’s a life ambition to aim for, giving us something to work towards and strive for. But the question on everyone’s lips is ‘how do I achieve this?’
Well, there are many paths to take, but one that doesn’t cross many people’s minds is work experience.
It is a bit trickier to find work experience as an adult, but it’s still possible.
This article will explore how to find work experience and explain why it’s always relevant, no matter where you are on the career ladder.
Why work experience?
This is probably the first question that comes to mind. ‘Wasn’t that something we had to do at secondary school?’
Whilst this is true, work experience/internships are still just as relevant and useful in adulthood.
After all, it can help you get workplace ready by developing your skills and knowledge needed for interviews. Alongside this, some employers may keep on individuals that they recruited on work experience and employ them in permanent, paid positions.
So, it’s a perfect opportunity to showcase your knowledge and willingness to learn about your chosen career path.
If you find work experience in a sector you want to work in, you’ll be able to talk more authoritatively and ask questions that resonate with a potential employer during interviews.
In today’s competitive job market, it’s important to differentiate yourself from candidates and learning the skills needed for said job will definitely help set you apart from the others.
Deciding where to get work experience
If you’ve always known what career you want to go into, the places to look for work experience are easy to narrow down (e.g. if you want a career in accountancy, try looking at accounts offices or banks).
But what if you are yet to decide what job is right for you? Is it something you need to know before going down this road? There’s no need to panic if that’s the case, as work experience can actually help you with that as well.
Think about what subjects you excelled in at school. Alongside this, what interests or hobbies do you have? Are there are any jobs you’ve seen other people do that you’ve taken an interest in?
You could even go for a job you know nothing about. Finding work experience as an adult is a great way to discover the potential of a new career even if just as a trial and error process.
Trying different experiences can also help build up your CV, as it shows your versatility and knowledge of different work sectors.
Asking family and friends
Asking a friend or family for work may seem like a ‘last resort’ scenario, but this is something that could actually be of use to you.
Speaking to those around you about work experience will help to reassure you about your decision and, as with all things in life, their support will mean a lot too. They care about you and want you to succeed, no matter how old you are.
Also, there’s the possibility that your relatives and friends may have connections within the world of work that can get you the placement you want.
Parents have a bigger knowledge about the world of work in general and may have had work experience to get to where they needed to be. So, where’s the harm in asking for advice?
There’s no questioning the impact that social media has had on the world. In terms of job hunting, using social media to find work has made it simpler to get connected with potential employers.
So, it stands to reason that it should help you find work experience just as equally.
When promoting yourself online, rather than jumping straight in and asking for job opportunities, strike up a rapport with organisations.
Use the time to find out more about the company and work out whether it’s really for you. Once you have found out more about them, drop the topic of work experience into the conversation, asking whether there’s any way they can help.
Using sites like Facebook, LinkedIn is a great way to self-promote and get yourself out there.
Ready to find work experience?
In the end, finding work experience isn’t just restricted to our school days; finding it in the adult world is just as beneficial for you to find your perfect job.
Learning as much as you can about your dream job is a fundamental step towards achieving that goal. So the more knowledge you have of your chosen career, the easier it will be to find work experience and the more appealing you’ll seem to employers.
So if you are thinking of a career change, here’s what you need to know.
Emma Gullon is a guest blogger for CV-Library. As well as writing advisory blogs here, she also has her own blog, Curious Reviews, in which she writes reviews on theatre shows in the Yorkshire area.