Kinja Dixon

“After I finish college or graduate school, I am going to attack my first job with the same intensity as school and set short term goals to stay motivated.”

This thought seems like the best way for all college students to look at the next phase of their lives, but based on recent statistics, it’s not hard to understand why students might not feel motivated after graduation. According to a Forbes report, sixty percent of U.S. graduates cannot find a job in their chosen profession. The truth is, school remains in session even after graduation, and the first two lessons are as follows:

Lesson One: Failure in success

Regardless of the field of study, after a college graduate starts applying for jobs, they have to be prepared mentally for a rollercoaster ride. If not, life altering attitude changes can start taking effect as the adjustment to the workforce begins. Anger, frustration, impatience and several other emotions can turn the best graduate into a bitter employee on a first class trip to a lifetime of non-fulfillment.

One of the biggest ways to deal with this scenario is to alter the way rejection is perceived. All unexpected events must be considered a lesson. It is easier said than done, of course, but seeing failure as an opportunity to grow is a great way to stay in a productive state of mind.

Once this habit is mastered, optimism results in a much more positive life. Most people have rough weeks, but the one who embraces this lesson has a week of unexpected opportunities. Soichiro Honda, who started the billion-dollar car company of the same name, was turned down when he interviewed with the Toyota Motor Corporation. Honda vehicles were the product of someone that knew how to turn failure into a major success.

Lesson Two: Do your best at all times

When a college student graduates with hopes of finding employment in one career field, but ends up in another, doing their best is not the first thought that comes to mind.

Someone who goes through this transition is in danger of starting a new chapter of their life in a very unproductive direction. The emotions that come with settling for a position, mixed with the actions of applying minimal effort, creates a habit of performing at a mediocre level. In many cases, an opportunity is not taken advantage of, while the art of not doing their best is mastered.

Regardless of the employment opportunity, learning all aspects of the operation and using the job description as a way to sharpen the mental sword, benefits the employee in several ways. The level of stress lowers, advancement potential in the current position increases, and new skills are created which only add to their character.

The length of your ladder of success will be determined by how many lessons you learn when you get out of school. “After I finish college or graduate school, I am going to attack my first job with the same intensity and set short-term goals to stay motivated.” This statement should be the standard when students enter the work or entrepreneurial force.

Kinja Dixon is an internationally award-winning sales management expert and motivational speaker. In 2013, Dixon won both a Gold Stevie Award and American Resort Development Association Award (ARDA) for Top In-House Salesperson, making him one of the most accomplished salespeople alive today. In Universal Talk Laws: How to Increase Your Net Worth With Words, Dixon offers practical advice on the art of verbal communication. For more information, visit

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