A new survey from Robert Half Technology, which queried hundreds of Chief Information Officers (CIO) from Canadian companies about the advice they would give to new grads, got a mix of old and new responses.
The most popular piece of advice, as mentioned by 57% of those surveyed, was for new graduates to keep learning new skills to stay current. Jeff Schwartz, executive director of Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada, agrees wholeheartedly –
“Learning doesn’t stop when you graduate from school,” says Schwartz. “In order to stay competitive in a dynamic industry, it’s essential to keep up-to-date with the latest trends and advancements.”
The second most popular piece of advice the CIOs would give to new grads is to be willing to take any job to get a foot in the door. This age old piece of advice was mentioned by 15% of those surveyed. Coming in third, with 9% of respondents mentioning it, was to be ready and willing to work long hours.
“A new grad shouldn’t be expecting to get their dream job right off the bat,” says Schwartz. “The more realistic route to success is to take an entry level position and work your way up the ladder through effort and hard-work.”
Once you get that first job, it’s prudent to avoid the urge to make a lot of purchases. Living debt free is the result of a myriad of decisions you make in your daily life. Consolidated Credit believes the best debt advice is to learn how to save money but here are a few more tips:
- Avoid a credit card debt problem – The urge to spend is never greater than when you get either your first credit card or your credit limit is increased. A new job will give you an influx of income, but also an increased temptation to spend. It’s easier to stay out of debt if you take pride in living a frugal lifestyle.
- Learning how to budget – Whether it’s on the football field, in the office or in the real world, having a plan is always a good idea. The best way to stay out of debt is to spend less than you earn. I know, it’s obvious, but you’d be surprised at how many people struggle to do it. Avoid that trap by planning what to buy and making sure it fits into your plan.
- Reduce your debt from school – Many new graduates will have some kind of debt when they finish school. This debt can follow you around for years and years if you don’t get serious about eliminating it. Getting out of debt can be as simple as setting up automatic loan payments each pay period to decrease it systematically. Again, follow a plan and you’ll see yourself paying down your debt in no time. Good luck!
If you want to learn more about making responsible financial decisions, check out Consolidated Credit’s free Personal Finance educational section. If you’re struggling with debt, call one of our trained counsellors today at for a free debt analysis.