Picture a successful professional: dream job, snazzy suit, nice house and car, seat at the head of the conference table. This person is the boss of the company, with enough financial freedom to travel around the world and spend on their passions.
Sounds like a far-fetched dream? It doesn’t have to be! Like you, successful professionals were once students, too. And like them, you can build a successful career. It’s all a matter of how to get there. The best way to find out is to learn from someone who has made it in the industry.
Roosevelt College, Inc. alumnus and successful entrepreneur Conrad Gloria shares his words of advice for the youth who dream big. Watch the video here (and check out an extended version of the career tips below):
5 tips on how to be successful in your career
Principles we can learn from Mr. Conrad Gloria
1. Hone your soft skills as early as high school
Technical skills won’t get you far in your career if you don’t have the soft skills (AKA personality traits and communication abilities needed for success on the job). The thing is, you can’t learn soft skills last-minute, before applying for a job; you won’t find effective seminars that teach intangible soft skills like attitude, creative thinking, work ethic, motivation, or teamwork.
Soft skills are abilities you develop over time. That’s why it’s important to learn the right principles while you’re young, so that soft skills become second nature to you.
Mr. Gloria shares that he developed his values early on as a high school student. According to him, “Roosevelt has taught me the virtues of honesty, fair dealings, integrity, hard work, discipline. I started to develop idealism about my future plans in life.” These values set the foundation for him to excel in his career.
2. Find mentors who can guide you and open doors for you
Luke Skywalker had Yoda, Harry Potter had Professor Dumbledore, and young Spiderman had Ironman to guide them to greatness. These heroes needed someone to show them the ropes and bring out their strengths. Everyone, including you, can grow with the help of wise mentors. Mr. Gloria talks of his high school teachers as some of his first mentors: “I started to have meaningful relationships with mentors that would prepare me to pursue college and then of course after that, my career.”
Find someone who has made it in the field; be open to their advice and training. At the very least, they will share their knowledge with you. And if you’re lucky, they could even introduce you to their connections and lead you to amazing job opportunities.
3. Follow your interests
Your interests, even the ones that seem trivial, could be your clues to a fulfilling career path. When you’re genuinely interested in something, you’ll be motivated to keep pursuing it and improving your relevant skills.
From his learning experiences as a high school student, Mr. Gloria followed his curiosity for Economics: “Right after [high school], I was lucky enough to enter UP as [an] iskolar ng bayan. I took up AB Economics because I was fascinated with understanding the way market forces behave to impact nations, societies, and ultimately the ordinary people.”
What started out as a spark of interest grew into years worth of learning, dedication, and career success. After 30 years in the industry, Mr. Gloria started his own advisory firm, employing “a bunch of talented and driven millennials serving a long list of corporate clients.” Talk about paying it forward to the next generation!
4. Take advantage of your most productive hours
Mr. Gloria may be a morning person who wakes up at 5 AM every day, but he doesn’t impose this lifestyle on everyone. There’s no one formula for what time to wake up and when to work. Whether you’re a morning person yourself or a night owl, plan out your tasks during your most productive hours.
Mr. Gloria advises, “We each have our own rhythm. I have a young team under my wing. Millennials, I notice, are more likely to be night owls than early birds. Yet, these kids are among the most productive professionals I’ve had the pleasure of working with.
Whether you’re a morning person or not, at the end of the day, it’s about making the most of the hours when your mind is at its peak performance. Plan the order of your day such that your critical thinking tasks and key decisions are set during your own peak hours. Leave the mundane items for your mental warm up or wind down phase.”
5. Replace insecurity with excellence
As a fresh graduate, it can be scary to enter a world of older, more experienced professionals. In a workplace that values merit and seniority, how do you find your voice?
Mr. Gloria says, “Some may not take you seriously. It is easy for you to be so eager to prove yourself, but remember also to be prudent and patient. We all went through that proving stage.” He adds, “Be best at your craft, try to get more exposure, and the right time will come for you.”
Want to be future-ready? Take the first step to career success through quality, affordable education. Roosevelt College, Inc.—now known as FEU Roosevelt—offers better-than-ever education for high school, college, and graduate studies.
Enroll in FEU Roosevelt now!