A CANAer's New Year's Reflection Part 1: The New Way of Working for New Graduates
The New Way of Working as a New Graduate
New Year, New Graduate, New Goals... There is probably a lot of newness in your life, and the question is: how do we adjust and conquer the new? Graduates of the past year have had to adjust to working life in a different way - virtually. Being that CANA Advisors has always been a 100% virtual company, I’ve picked up some tips and tricks to working virtually as a new graduate this past year, and to set meaningful goals for 2021.
Working Virtually: The New Way of Working
When you are coming into the workforce from college life, you always have an idea about what this “adult life” will be like. You would probably wake up, work your 9-5, have your after-work hobbies, and that would be it. Little did we know this new way of working from home and online could change our lives in such a positive way. I adopted the working from home (WFH) lifestyle from the beginning of my professional career with CANA. CANA not only gave me flexibility in my work life, but also taught me to balance work and my personal life.
I think this is the beauty of working virtually. My hope for the future is that companies realize how important it is to give their employees that balance so they can work efficiently and effectively. Don’t get me wrong, I know it can be hard to motivate yourself to work in your home, or even leave your bed sometimes when you really don’t want to. Adjusting to working virtually takes time, but once you find your rhythm and boundaries of the virtual work lifestyle, you will realize how healthy it can be, and how much time you can put into other parts of your life as well.
Remember that not everyone works the same. Your rhythm and boundaries could be far different than your co-worker. It’s listening to your body and your brain and realizing what is the best way to work efficiently - for you. Some people may be able to work 5 hours in a row, but maybe you are a person who works an hour and then needs a 15-minute break. That’s okay! Part of adjusting to this working virtually lifestyle is making sure you are sustaining your energy and focus because if you neglect your well-being, it can start to affect other areas of your life.
New Goals for 2021
A lot of people think their goals have to be something work-related or to make a certain amount of money, but when I think about goals, I think about the all-around
accomplishments that are going to make me better as an employee and also better as an individual. These goals can also help you in this new year -
Consistency: This is key because oftentimes we overwhelm ourselves or even underwhelm ourselves with our work and personal life. We want to go really hard or be really lazy. Consistency gives you that balance you need to keep going when you don’t want to, but also the balance of giving yourself rest when it’s needed.
Rest: Don’t forget about this one. As new graduates, we want to show our employers and co-workers that we were meant for this, and we are willing to go to the extremes to accomplish our jobs, but don’t forget about yourself and your well-being. You can’t perform at your best if you don’t give your body time to rest. This doesn’t mean sitting on the couch watching TV but just stepping away from your computer or apartment in the slightest way. This could be going for a walk, going to your favorite restaurant, or playing a game of pick up basketball! Whatever puts your mind at ease and gets you to take a break from your work headspace - go for it!
Confidence: You are you for a reason. As an entry-level employee, sometimes we can be hesitant about stepping on people's toes or be afraid to voice our ideas because we don’t have as much experience. Don’t be afraid! What we don’t realize as the younger generation is that we have a fresh perspective on the world, and we see it through a lens of change and shifting. One idea of yours could change a company for the better, but you will never know unless you share your ideas. You might get shot down a few times, but that’s okay. That’s part of the learning process. You can never fail, you can either win or learn.
As far as we know, working virtually is going to be around for a while. Take advantage of the fresh-tech mind you have as a new graduate and run with it! Set those goals and boundaries, get into a rhythm, and don’t forget to share your ideas. This is a new way of working, and you’re the front runner, kid!