Without this piece appearing to be a self-promotional tool, I would like to give a concise list of the qualities that I believe the majority of graduates possess. I do this with a view to provide suggestions as to why it is imperative that companies give graduates a second glance.
Look on the Bright Side
Would-be employers should not only allow but actively encourage graduates to discuss their transferable skills from their courses. If a graduate completed a history degree, why can’t they promote their skills in negotiation of evidence? Instead, interviewers dismiss these merits and push the nervous young person across the desk from them, to deliver ‘real life experience and examples from previous relevant employment.’ I’m not denying that either of these expectations are beyond valuable. However, it did come as a surprise to me on a couple of occasions when I was told that I couldn’t ‘prove’ my creativity outside of my degree and this is what mattered.
I am of belief that degrees should have more prominence within a young person’s chance at a career. It shouldn’t be squashed into the education section of their C.V, as it holds a lot more weight than prior qualifications. Employers must remember that further education is something you choose to do, it is not compulsory. Those that have gained a solid degree in a worthy subject, will have passion for their subject and they want to bring their knowledge set to where they work.
I’d like to state here that I attended the University of Leeds (which is a Redbrick, Russell Group establishment) and that I am not an advocate for ‘unique’ subjects such as ‘Beer Making’. Although, I wouldn’t be surprised if some of the interviewers I came into contact with, would have probably informed me that this type of topic would have been useful as it was a practical skill, unlike my English Language and Literature degree. Here at Westbury, my BA has certainly been viewed as a plus and not been disregarded.
Three Reasons to Give Grads a Go!
- The process of assessment at university brings about the ability to think critically and analytically. As well as assessing our environment, we can gauge how we fit into a company and exactly how we can contribute most effectively. Not only can we become part of the well-oiled machine, we can also learn in which areas we can further ourselves. The keenness to hear feedback and rework essays means that graduates respond well to management and strive for accuracy.
- Graduates are promoters and supporters of change. Their immediate enthusiasm to become part of a team and work towards revitalisation will motivate others around them. This of course ties in with the capitalisation on interpersonal skills. For example, in my case I am now an active member of the start up of a new social committee at Westbury. It’s an arena for creativity as well, another vital aspect of my degree. Just as importantly I feel I am more than able to uphold the firm’s positive reputation in building rapport with clients.
- Lastly, I feel graduates are adaptable and resilient. I was told by a recruitment agency, never to express in an interview, that as a graduate you have shown your resilience through surviving countless rejections. Truthfully, I think this example encapsulates a graduate’s tough skin. For ambitious people their first full time job may not be their dream one. Graduates possess the ability to turn a situation around.
If graduates view themselves as a blank canvas (without losing conviction), they can strive to be interested in whatever work is thrown at them. By moulding themselves in this way, they will always create and harness an invaluable experience.
Rehana Khan – Administrative Assistant
Westbury Accountants and Business Advisors is an accountancy practice based in London. Westbury have been providing Accounting and Tax solutions to small and medium sized businesses since 1936. Talk to the team at Westbury on 0207 253 7272 or visit http://www.westbury.co.uk.