I don’t envy young college graduates today. They have completed a rite of passage only to find that the next stop on their journey can be a cold and heartless place. It can also be exciting and full of opportunity. Gradspot.com is helping to make this transition a positive experience. The company recently published a book, The Gradspot.com Guide to Life After College, which is a practical handbook written by twentysomethings for twentysomethings with humor and sensitivity to the issues that concern college graduates. The authors, Chris Schonberger and Stuart Schultz, have made the book available as a free downloadable ebook or for purchasing as a paperback.
On first seeing the book, I immediately went to the chapter titled “Working Life” (Chapter IV) and was pleasantly surprised by the usefulness of the content. For example, here is some of what they said about starting a new job.
Starting work can potentially be one of the most awkward things you’ve ever done in your life. Waiting to be told where to sit, how to log into your e-mail, and who (if anyone) is going to go to lunch with you can make you feel like a helpless infant waiting to suck at the teat of responsibility. It can also be an incredibly nerve-racking experience—an unofficial survey conducted by me shows that first day nerves register even higher on peoples’ fear factor than losing their virginity! The thing to remember is that adults in the workforce can be as awkward, lazy, or self-absorbed as the people you knew in college, and unfortunately not everyone is going to jump out of his seat to make the new person feel comfortable. You have to slowly work your way into the fold—don’t force it. (p. 119)
That’s good advice. But the book is not only for grads. People that are responsible for recruiting, hiring, and retaining twentysomethings (Generation Y) will find this book to be a useful guide to the concerns of this generation as they join the workforce after college. For example, it caused me to wonder if I have appeared “awkward, lazy, or self-absorbed” when I have been responsible for new hires.