Gaining work experience for me was a complete life changer, and I would never take back the opportunities I took because I can’t stress enough how important they were to me. So I thought I would compile a quick list of my top reasons for taking the leap, just in case anyone was wondering about taking it up.
1. Gaining Confidence
I will never be able to iterate enough, just how much confidence my time working has given me. Going into a working environment professionally for the first time can be so daunting, but I was lucky enough to have such lovely people take me under their wing and show me the ropes. I left my placements feeling so much more confident, not only in myself, but in the course that I was doing and the job I wanted to pursue.
2. Making Contacts
Not only does reaching out for work experience mean that you have to make contact and sell yourself, but working in a PR environment will show just how crucial it is to be networking. Even just doing the work experience itself is networking, you’re making new contacts in the office that you can connect with on LinkedIn, and if you make a good impression, you never know if you’ll need to reach out again in the future.
Doing work experience in a field that you potentially want to pursue, is a great way to reassure yourself that you are following the right path and you know what direction you want to take after you graduate. Even if it’s not, it gives you the perfect chance to know that something isn’t right for you and that you can change your ideas to try something new.
This one is pretty much a given, but it does need saying. Gaining that extra experience is invaluable at taking what you’ve been learning in the classroom out into the real world, and applying it to real clients. Knowing that you have been taking your lectures on board and that you are able to step up in a work place, does wonders not only for your confidence again, but also for building your experience.
Of course I would recommend that you do work experience for some other reasons, not just because it’ll look good on your CV, as you’ll have to enjoy what you do and get some other valuable results from it! But of course, it will make your CV look good too. Especially nowadays when almost everyone seems to be getting a degree, you need to be going that extra mile to make yourself stand out and make yourself employable.
As is probably evident, I thoroughly recommend gaining work experience – or even just volunteering – because it adds immensely to your skill set and you never know just how much it’ll benefit you in the future.
– Personally, Emma