When it comes to business, there’s no such thing as starting too early. While a solid undergraduate degree will set you firmly on the path to success, competition is fierce and there will be many graduates with great qualifications all looking for their first opportunity in finance, accountancy or management. By going the extra mile during your student years, you can lay foundations for your future that will pay dividends.
As one of the country’s leading specialist universities, the London School of Business and Finance (LSBF) have put together a list of some of the best tips and tricks for making your CV dazzle. Take a look below:
Attend networking events
As the old saying goes, you can never have too many friends. The business world works exactly the same way – you just don’t know when you might need some niche advice, a last-minute favour or a new recruit to recommend. Being a student doesn’t mean you can’t act like a professional – start attending networking events as soon as you can, making sure to take along business cards.
Try to avoid introducing yourself as a student – you don’t have to claim to be an expert, but reinforcing your specialism and intentions instead of your learning status often helps in terms of getting established bankers to take you seriously.
Go the extra mile
An undergraduate accountancy degree suggests that you’re good with maths, whereas a masters and PhD in bookkeeping from a dedicated institution like LSBF will make it obvious that you have a specialism that you are truly passionate about. Extra qualifications will help you gain an edge on all the other undergraduates, displaying true commitment and dedication.
Do work experience and internships
Although a wonderful academic transcript speaks plenty about a person’s intellect and discipline, there are certain positive attributes that can only be measured in a hands-on situation. By taking on work experience or internships during your summer holidays, you will gain true-to-life knowledge of the working world, complementing your studies and marking you out as an all-rounder. If you impress on an internship, it is definitely worth keeping in touch – that company may well end up providing your first graduate job.
Update your online presence
Many students are so intent on getting their qualification that they forget to act like a professional in the online world. Forget funny cat videos and selfies – social media is a place to network, share industry-related thoughts and ultimately, seek out new opportunities in your field. Not sure where to start? Think about businessmen and women whose careers you’d like to emulate, and follow them on Twitter. If they post something that interests you, respond to them – polite persistence is key to a successful career in finance, and you may well just strike up a friendship. Not sure whether something is suitable to post online? Think about how you’d feel if your boss read it. If the thought doesn’t sit comfortably, it may be worth a rephrase.
Start your own business
Nothing says ‘I want to work in finance’ more than starting your own small business. The benefits are plentiful – it will give you genuine industry experience, you’ll have plenty to talk about at interviews, and any money you make can supplement your student loan. A student with the initiative to take the reins for themselves will always impress a prospective employer, marking you out as a great investment. Best of luck!