"Working World 101"
Human resource consultant Bridget
Graham doesn't hold back when she
talks about the working world. "Looking
for a job is a job and so you can't take
the easy way out," she says. Her new book, "Working World 101: The New Grad's Guide To Getting A Job," is intended for the jobless college graduate who is ready to make the daring leap from student life to corporate
By highlighting the specific tools graduates need on their voyage to employment, authors Bridget Graham and Monique Reidy break down the daunting process in their book. The idea for their book first started when Graham, who already had a successful career as a human resources manager, returned to school to obtain her masters in communication at
Graham would work with undergraduate students in the journalism department and assist her fellow classmates on their style techniques, editing work, and overall writing development.
In the midst of helping her fellow students with her already full employment background, Graham said she, "acquired a sense of who the students were and what they were looking to achieve."
"As I got into the classes with the
students and I started watching them
and understanding them, I felt like these
students had so much to look forward
to, I just wanted to get in and give
them answers," Graham said about her
experience with her assistantship.
Not only did this spark the idea about writing her book, but she also met co-author Monique Reidy in her communications class. Both equipped with communication degrees, Graham and Reidy matched up as a perfect duo to create this essential book on snagging a job.
Yet upon reading the book I was presented with by Graham herself, I realized this is not your typical how-to book. Broken down into three sections, the book gives the reader full access to a variety of tips that will leave them fully equipped to bust out their Trump cards in the interview room.
The book ends up brimming with originality found in personal inventory checklists, suggested questions to ask in an interview, how to write a resume and cover letter, lists of job-related web sites, and cheat sheets for you lazy readers who prefer condensed facts.
Graham and Reidy also add commentary from HR managers to corporate directors in sections called, "Advice from the Corner Office." One particular corner office section satirized common mistakes graduates make when speaking to their prospective employers in informal language. Common usages of "um", "like" and "you know what I
mean?" have infiltrated job interviews
making a persons professional rhetoric
(or lack thereof) become deciding
factors in determining whether or not
you are in the "yes" or "no" pile.
Even voicemails like, "Hi, um, this is Melonie, and, um, I, um, sent in my
resume, and, um, am hoping you'll give me an interview?" have been surprisingly uttered from the mouths of four year graduates applying for jobs.
Oh the agony!
However, even if you are equipped with exceptional verbal and linguistic skills that surpass Plato himself, Graham stresses in her book the importance of confidence. "You have to have confidence that you deserve to be there. That's not a sense of
entitlement. There's a difference between
entitlement and confidence. You want to know your information, your facts, and skills and that will give you your confidence," Graham said when interviewed at a Santa Monica Starbucks.
Reiterating this idea in her book, Graham used specific pages called "Class Notes" which gives advice from twenty-something professionals who offer an inside perspective on their vocational opportunities after college.
Twenty four year old Arica, who strived for a job in fashion, was one of the many examples Graham used in the books "Class Notes."The book highlights her involvement in a Fashion Institution and her chance run-in with an owner of a prominent clothing line.
Eventually finding herself in the
midst of an opportunity, Arica's actions
and advice given in "Working World"
provide more of a personal touch to
the books tone and allows the reader
to follow the examples of such success
Also setting her book apart from other
how-to books lined on bookshelves is
the target audience: YOU! "Our book is
specifically targeted to college students
and there isn't anything like it out there.
It's written in a language where it is easy
to read and it's fun," Graham said.
Graham also stressed that through the
book, students will better realize their
potential to succeed, "that you (students)
still have this great opportunity even
though you are graduating into this
According to a survey from the
National Association for Colleges and
Employers (NACE), employers are
expected to hire 22 percent fewer new
grads from the college class of 2009 then
they hired from the Class of 2008.
But don't let this finding startle your
"go get 'em" attitude. With people like
Bridget Graham and Monique Reidy
who offer top notch advice in "Working
World 101," students won't feel like
a lost ball in the high weeds when
graduating from the classroom to the