How college graduates can address lack of work experience

Posted January 27, 2016 by

Work experience cannot be underestimated when it comes to finding their first full-time jobs. College graduates who don’t have work experience might believe they can’t compete with graduates who do. However, a lack of work experience does not mean college graduates cannot land jobs. James Wright, Bridge Partner, offers advice on how college graduates can address having little to no work experience when entering the job market.

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James Wright, Bridge Partner

“I can speak to your issue of soon-to-be-grads who feel inadequate about their lack of work experience. It’s an all-too-common experience, whether deserved (for those who didn’t adequately prepare for the job market) and even for many of those who have strong skills but doubt themselves. There are a number of ways to address those feelings head-on.

Most employers are looking for a blend of hard skills and attitude/soft skills, so there’s comfort in knowing that your soft skills, and your desire and drive, can bridge some of the gap of inexperience. There are also hard skills, most notably technical skills, which are almost universally valuable to employers and which in most cases one can learn without too much time or expense. A lot of my advice would be based on attitude: understand that many others have the same feelings so don’t sell yourself short, and – above all else – don’t let these feelings make you tentative and shy away from opportunities, all that will do is widen the gap.”

This January, College Recruiter is sharing the advice and opinions of employers and career development experts to assist students connect the dots on their path to career success. Visit College Recruiter’s blog and connect with College Recruiter on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube.

James Wright, Bridge Partner, spent 13 years in the IT staffing industry in Silicon Valley before purchasing Bridge in 2002. He was the head of HR and Recruiting at ThinkLink, a Communications ASP start-up in San Francisco; co-founded a contract IT staffing firm, Encore Technical Staffing in Menlo Park; and worked in senior roles at Advanced Technology Staffing, a leading contract IT staffing firm in the Bay Area. James has been published and quoted extensively on the employment industry, recruiting, and the state of the job market. He has a BA from Vassar College and a Master’s from San Francisco State University. He serves on various boards, including BankNewport, The Newport County Fund of the Rhode Island Foundation, and the Jamestown Historical Society. James lives in Jamestown with his wife, daughter, and twin boys.

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