You head to college all excited to leave the drama of High School behind. And for the years in college you escaped the drama and replaced it with intense homework assignments and job interviews. Now you are in the working world, or are preparing to head into it, and some facets of High School days are going to creep back in. Let me explain.
- The Prom: It’s the big day everyone thinks about in high school. It’s an event symbolizing the successes of the school year along with your attempts to socialize and make friends. What event do career minded, driven individual think about that symbolizes successes and networking at work…The promotion.
- It’s Not Fair: But seriously, how many times did you say that in high school? Guess what, you are going to stay it all the time at work too. The hard work you will do above and beyond expectations – that won’t be recognized. The new project you’ll ask to take on – only to see it assigned to another coworker. The best you can do is take these experiences as “lessons learned” and try to turn them into something positive. Find the good in the situation or learn from it.
- The “cool kids”: Yes, there will still be the “cool kids” when you get to work. They won’t ask you to be on their softball team. They won’t include you in the conversations at happy hour. First and foremost they are your coworkers, so act as such. And find your own group of friends that will welcome you and appreciate you. Rather than be sad about not being friends with the cool kids, be happy about how many awesome friends you do have. It isn’t about the people who make you sad and upset, but about the people who can make you smile.
- Clothes Matter: It may no longer be about the fashionable clothes, what’s in style, but about the ones who are dressing for success and appropriately for work. Clean, wrinkle-free, polished is the “in style” look now. And since first impressions and presentation are part of the work culture it is a key to achieving success – dressing clean, well fitted and put together.
- Good Teachers: Just as a good teacher can make the most boring of topics interesting, or the hardest of classes easy to understand, so can too a good manager. Like registering for classes and picking your preferred teacher, so too will you at work. Aiming to meet and network with the bosses you hear positive comments on. The bosses that respect you and help you develop your career and challenge you and give you feedback and motivate you. Just like the best teachers and professors do in the classroom.
Take Away: Hopefully through all that typical high school drama you were able to grow in to a stronger and more confident young adult. Make the workplace drama and politics and outlet for you to grow stronger and more confident as a young professional.