Making the Move from Studying to Working

Transitioning from tertiary education to the workplace can be like swimming in cold water; it takes a while to adjust to the new environment.

Studying is an inward looking process and entering the workforce requires an ability to develop an outward looking perspective. The tertiary environment is mostly theoretical and finding ways to think about the unexpected is very useful when applying oneself in the practical day to day reality of the workplace.

In order to find a job we are required to compete with a wide range of people, including our fellow students and developing resilience as we get started is an important quality.

Younger graduates working with well established professionals will experience a range of responses from their older colleagues. Being aware of these responses and being able to think how to manage your own response are two useful steps to consider.

Mature students entering the workplace have life experiences that enable them to cope with applying newly learned skills and becoming a valued team member.

Intergenerational differences need to be seriously considered, it's not just a theory! The older generation of Baby Boomers has its own qualities as do Gen X, Gen Y and now Gen Z. These differences are well documented and finding ways of working together is a constant challenge. Being on the lookout for similarities as well as differences is a key factor for a balanced future.

Building on positive connections in the company we work with is a practical way to create a supportive work environment.

Extending this network requires an ability to think systematically, to consider people inside and outside our immediate workplace. These inter-connections will gradually become the supportive environment that we need, especially when things get tough.


Key words; transitioning, outward looking, intergenerational, differences and similarities, building connections.

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"Life is what happens to you while your busy making other plans" John Lennon