From Dissertation to Director: Why it’s Okay For Your First Job to be Your Last

By Gemma Spinks,

Leaving university is daunting for everyone and taking your first job is even scarier. But pile on top of that the pressure to make your CV as appealing as possible, and many graduates find themselves jumping from job to job looking for experience in everything before settling down. 

But what if you got it right first time?

There is a stigma around people staying with one business for their entire career and what was once the norm is now deemed strange – or even a fail in some cases – by the younger generation. However, staying with one business doesn’t mean you have to stay static in your role. And this is especially true if you join a small business. In this case, it is likely that you will grow with the business and your role with evolve as the business does.

This isn’t a fail, it’s a huge success. It’s also likely that you will have contributed to the success of the business, with new ideas, your loyalty and any additional skills you may have brought to the wider team. And hopefully those inputs will be repaid with new opportunities, training, higher pay and other perks. 

And keeping staff for a longer period of time is also good for employers. Hiring new employees and getting them trained up is a costly task, so when you find some great talent you really want to keep them. After all, retained, happy staff who feel empowered by their part in your business are the employees that will likely make it thrive.

I came to Neo PR nearly 7 years ago after completing a Journalism degree at The University of Westminster. I didn’t do as well as I had liked and graduated with a 2:2 rather than the 2:1 I had hoped for, but nonetheless I secured my first PR job. I was full of enthusiasm and had joined at a great time for the business as it was all set up to grow and happy to take some of my enthusiasm and let me run with some new ideas for the business. Fast forward a few years and, having evolved through a variety of different roles during my time, I am now on the Board.

The point of the story is that you must go into your first job with an open mind. Initially, it might not be somewhere you see yourself staying for years, but look for the opportunity the business might hold and actually you could find that you can build yourself a pretty great career without having to interview ever again.

Gemma Spinks is a Director at Neo PR.

Photo by MD Duran on Unsplash

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