NEW BREMEN — According to Monster.com’s Randy Adelman, success comes down to two things — desire and know-how.
“Those two things are what success boils down to,” Adelman said to a group of Minster and New Bremen seniors Friday morning during his presentation, “Making College and Career Count.” “Nobody can give you desire, that one is completely up to you. What I can do, what your teachers and counselors have been trying to do, is I can give you the know-how. I can give you the tips and tools to help you on your path to success.”
One path to success, he said, may be continuing education. Attaining a degree, he said, will lead to more money.
“Over the course of her lifetime, on average she is going to make $1 million more than those who didn’t go down that path,” he said of someone who obtains a four-year degree. “(With a two-year degree) you’ll make an average over your lifetime half a million dollars more than someone who didn’t go that route. So generally speaking, continuing your education or getting that degree is a good investment. It could really pay off.”
When selecting what career path to pursue, Adelman recommended considering three factors. First, he advised picking something interesting.
“You want to do something that you like to do because you’re going to do it for a while,” he said. “Pick something that is of interest to you.”
Adelman also encouraged students to choose something they are good at.
“Look for a career that you are naturally good at, skills that come naturally to you,” he said.
Looking at the future job market, Adelman added, is also important.
“There’s too many stories out there where people have spent a lot of time and money investing in a certain career path, and when they get out, that particular industry is on the decline or moving to something else,” he said.
“You want to make sure you research the future job market because you want to be able to answer, ‘Will I have a job when I get out.’”
After choosing a career path and gaining the necessary qualifications, standing out in a job interview will be a challenge. Many times, Adelman said, there will be several qualified candidates for one open position.
Most interviewers are looking for a variation of the same seven traits.
“They’re looking for someone who is smart, is a problem-solving, computer-literate, team-oriented individual that is entrepreneurial, ethical and well-organized and a good communicator,” he said.
Success, he said, is a choice, and there are several choices to make to help lead to success. The first, he noted, is branding.
“Each and every one of you has your own personal brand,” Adelman said. “A lot of people look at you and they have certain opinions of you. How do they make those opinions? Usually by how they see you act or what they’ve heard.”
Adelman encouraged students to be cautious of what they post online, as it is an extension of their personal brand and potential employers are likely to see it.
“A good rule of thumb to follow when it comes to what you write and post online is if you wouldn’t put it on a resume, you probably shouldn’t put it out on the Internet because it may become a part of the interview process or your application and you would never even know it,” he said.
The second choice students can make, he said, is to network.
“It’s not always what you know, but it’s who you know that may help get you your next job,” Adelman said. “There’s a lot of truth to that. That’s where the power of networking comes into play.”
When meeting people, Adelman recommended finding a common interest, looking for ways to help and keeping in touch as a way to maintain a professional relationship.
Time management, he said, is also an important skill.
“When it comes to measuring time, look at how you spend your time and seriously consider if what you’re doing or what you’re investing in is going to help propel you or set yourself up for your future endeavors or hold you back and keep you where you’re at today,” he said.
Adelman also cautioned seniors to keep track of their finances.
“Your finances will have a serious impact on your future career college experience,” he said, noting it is common for college students to feel stress from their financial situations. “They may end up doing one of two things — dropping out or going further into debt.”
Finances come down to separating two things, he advised.
“Separating your wants from your needs,” he said. “I know that you need to eat, but you don’t have to eat at a restaurant. Maybe you need a credit card at some point, but you don’t need to be putting concert tickets on there for you and your three closest friends.”
Adelman encouraged students use web resources to research career paths, companies and colleges to help plan their way to success.
“Making College and Career Count” was presented to seniors free of charge because of the sponsorship of the National Guard, Monster College, Fastweb and Monster.com.