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Important Things to Know When Entering the Workforce

Important Things to Know When Entering the Workforce

Published by mathieu

Starting your very first job is an incredibly exciting yet nerve-wracking time, full of hope, enthusiasm, and probably a solid dose of nervousness. Whether you’re a recent college graduate or moving on from another stage of your life, starting your career afresh represents a new chapter full of possibilities for learning and growing. 

Naturally, there’s going to be a lot you don’t know yet, which is completely normal and okay. However, to get a head start, here are a few important tips for taking that first step. 

Understand Your Rights in the Workplace

First of all, it’s essential to know your rights as an employee if you want to guarantee protection and fair treatment at work. Take some time to learn about the laws, rules, and corporate policies that might affect your rights and responsibilities as an employee. These could include rules pertaining to discrimination, minimum wages, overtime compensation, workplace safety, and harassment procedures. 

Learn how to start a union in Alberta (or whichever province you work in) if your workplace doesn’t already have one. This can help ensure safe working conditions, reasonable scheduling, and better benefits for you and your colleagues. 


Clearly Define Your Career Path

It’s also a good idea to take some time to clearly establish your professional path before rushing into the job market. When you have an idea of where you want to end up, it’s easier to find the right entry-level positions that will help you get there. 

Think about the fields, specific jobs, and work settings that pique your interest and get you excited. However, remember to embrace flexibility – we don’t always have a clear idea of our dream career, or we might change our minds a few years down the line, and that’s okay too.

Invest in Skill Development

Reaching your idea of success and truly growing in your career is going to require you to put the work in and make sure you’re getting a little better each day. You can do this by taking courses and classes, studying on your own time, reading non-fiction books and more.


Keep in mind that employers will reward soft skills (like communication, teamwork, problem-solving, and adaptability) as much as technical skills, which are necessary for carrying out certain job functions. Make sure you’re effective and innovative in the workplace by working on both of these throughout your career. A growth mentality will take you far, both in your personal and professional life.

Prioritize Work-Life Balance

When you first start working, it’s incredibly easy to fall into the pattern of hustle culture – being tuned into work 24/7 and prioritizing your career above all else. You want to impress your employer and co-workers, grow in your career, learn, and prove to yourself that you can do this. 


While this is a great attitude to have, it’s also important that you take care of your personal life and mental health. Be aware and make an effort to draw clear boundaries between your work and personal life, and make sure you’re prioritizing self-care as well. 

Photo by the cactusena: