From student to employee

Owen Langdown is a Retail Management Diploma graduate who is currently employed by GWK.  He shares his experience from being a student to becoming an employee

I would like to start by saying that the student environment is a safe environment. The working environment is a more complex but yet interesting and challenging environment. 

I was part of the group that registered in the year 2015. A boy for the rural dusty streets of the Namakwa region. One of the very first ones in my family to have enrolled at a University.

The transition from a student to a full time employee is a difficult one. The reason for this is that as a student you can still make some mistakes and those mistakes can be rectified. In the work place it is slightly different. Here the room for mistakes are limited. 

I know that being a student isn’t always easy. I would like to urge every student to make sure that they enjoy the full-time student life. This I am saying because of the fact that once you go out of the student environment the manner in which you should conduct yourself will change. When I say the self-conduction will change, I mean the way you handle a certain situation is different. We as students often think or tend to have the perception that life on the outside of university is nice and chilled becauseyou don’t have to study for a test or submit an assignment. 

I have come to the realisation that there are also submissions to be done, it may not be an assignment or a test, but it may be that there is a report to be submitted or a meeting preparation that you have to complete. The corporate world is an ever-changing and challenging the world. There is only one way to stay ahead of this changes and that is through planning. This is the one thing I know not all students pay attention to. 

The shift between being a student and being an employee is a process. This I say because of the fact that the change between these two environments does not happen in just one day. There are some behaviours that you as a student will have to unlearn and relearn. This may include learning the habit to start with tasks prior to prevent a crisis. 

If I knew back then what I know now, I would have conducted myself in a more professional way. The reason for this is because of the fact that if you start with the end in mind you will always succeed. I never thought I would see myself in a private company working in HR.

My vision was to become a teacher. But I have come to realise that even though you plan for something,always make room for change and be able to adapt to that change. I have foundfrom my own experience as a student that we don’t react good to change and wetend to feel under pressure when we are faced with change. 

Note to all who will be reading this. My motivation in this hard corporate environment is:

#1. Be the best you.

#2. Don’t allow anyone to look down on you. 

#3. You are able to do whatever task is placed before you.

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