Tips for thinking about your career and your professional project

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The scientific directors of the INSEEC Paris MSc & MBA programs have taken the floor on our blog to give you their advice and tips on the themes that are important to our students. Today, Guillaume LEFEBVRE, Scientific Director of the Finance programs at the Paris campus, takes the pen to deliver his professional point of view on the ways in which a student can think about his career and his professional project. For him, there is no doubt: it is necessary that the student questions himself before being able to answer such a question… 

This question is not asked often enough, although it is the most fundamental one.  Let’s imagine, in a rather trivial way, that you are preparing for a sports competition requiring a shoe equipment for example. The how would come at some point, but naturally you would precede it with the following question : what is the pair of shoes that will allow me to reveal my qualities, make me feel good and thus succeed.

In a way, the same is true for the company in which you will carry out your professional project. It should fit you like a glove ! It is up to you to adopt it at least as much as to adapt to it.

What do I really want ? That is the question ?

 It may seem like a spoiled child’s question , especially in difficult economic times, to ask what we really want. And why, there is nothing more fundamental, especially for a future graduate. The first professional experience(s) are often the foundation of a whole professional life and it is advisable to ” find the right shoe ” to make THE right start. Sometimes that of a whole life !

The questions are multiple, but to simplify, often revolve around ” hard skills ” and ” soft skills “. What job and function would I like to do ? In what environment and what atmosphere ? And in spite of beliefs, it is often on the environment that the questioning must be the most accomplished and the most fruitful.

A good way to do this is to get help from the people who love you. But those who really love you ! Not the ones who tell you ” in your place I would do this or I would not do that ” ! They are just talking about themselves… Those who really love you will say, ” as I know you, I am sure you will reveal yourself in this context “. Ask them open-ended questions and be surprised by their answers. Those who love you often give you confidence far beyond that which you give to yourself ! They tell you that you can aim high ! After a dozen or so attempts, you will soon see an alignment between your wishes for professional achievement and their view of your chances.

You can only find what you are looking for !

That’s it, you’ve drawn your professional design. You can go into the search with two unspeakable assets, but which will be deeply visible in the recruitment interview : the determination of someone who is motivated about what they want, the confidence that this posture inspires in a recruiter .

There are several methods to promote the meeting. Either decipher the keywords and profiles that attract you in the ads ; it is the answer to the demand. Either articulate these keywords in spontaneous applications ; it is your offer that you are pushing. Or better yet, combine the two, which is what social networks allow.

And then, finally, in the course of these reflections and this quest, it can happen that we realize that the company we are looking for does not really exist. Don’t feel bad about it, because it’s the best sign that you are the only one who can create it !

Guillaume LEFEBVRE
Scientific Director, Finance Division
Paris Campus

Updated 24 February 2022