Have you ever wondered how to gain work experience while going to school? I am currently attempting to travel down this road. I have been going to school for my bachelor’s degree in communications, but I kept thinking to myself, how in the world am I going to get the marketing experience I need without the degree? Then it hit me, try to move to a new position in the company I already work for!
When I first started here, I was in the position of “order entry.” This wasn’t exactly the position I was hoping to have while I was going to school for communications. I was in this position for a few months before a position titled “lead generation specialist” opened up in the marketing department. My initial thought was ‘how exciting!’ When the worldwide marketing manager sent me the job description, it was a little intimidating. It was a brand new position within the company and the lucky fella or gal that landed it needed to have a college degree and also, needed to make the position a successful one.
Well, I thought to myself, there can’t be any harm in at least trying to get the job. So, I applied for it. Next thing I knew I was getting interviewed by upper management so that they could test my critical selling skills. After the interview, I was unbelievably nervous. But then by some miracle, I got an email telling me that they were offering me the job. WOW!
So, I have been in this position for about a month and all of a sudden, the marketing communications specialist job opens up. OH MY GOODNESS. This is exactly what I was hoping for. But here’s a dilemma, I’ve only been in my position for a month and now I want to move again. But here is my philosophy. Live day by day, moment by moment. IF an opportunity presents itself, don’t hesitate, just ask. There is no harm in trying. And, if you don’t at least try, then chances are you are going to highly regret the decision to be shy.
So, I pushed all my stress and body shaking anxiety aside and brought my manager in for a one on one to inquire about the job. And guess what? I landed a writing project and an interview for tomorrow. THAT my friends is called ambition and initiative, and THAT is what you need to succeed in your workplace.
The moral of the story is this, if you want to improve yourself, but don’t have the degree to prove your skills to another employer, try moving up in the company you already work for!
Here are some ideas:
1. Keep an eye out for internal openings. Chances are your company will post them internally first before posting them on third party websites.
2. If you are up against multiple external candidates, think about this: you have a distinct advantage over them. Why? Because you probably know the company and its product or service like the back of your hand. Use this to your advantage.
3. If you want to move up in your company and you are going to school for the position you want, management will not only consider you, but chances are they will offer to pay for your part of your degree as well!
Ambition, initiative, and motivation will get you everywhere in life.
Life is short, don’t pass up an opportunity because it is intimidating. At least put in the effort to nail it and if you do, your company will most likely put in a decent effort to train you. They obviously saw something in you that they didn’t see in everyone else.