March 27, 2014

How to Make a Lasting Impression: Round 2

By: Kristine Esposo

This is the second installment in this series. Read the first installment here: Tips to Make a Lasting Impression 

It’s your first job out of college. You might be answering phones, compiling reports, or doing spreadsheets. Or, if you’re lucky, maybe you get to travel for work. If the early years of your career seem mundane, don’t forget – this is probably one of the most important points of your career.

Making a lasting impression, whether you’re a young staffer on the Hill or an intern at a think tank, will set the tone for your resume for years to come. Here are a few tips on how to make sure it’s a good one. 

  1. Make friends…and not just with important people. Relationship building is a no brainer – this is Washington, DC, after all – but remember that every relationship is important. From your fellow junior colleagues to administrative and support staff, you’ll never know who will be able to help you in your career.

  2. Handwrite notes. In the world of tweets and Facebook posts, a handwritten note goes a long way and serves as a physical reminder of your extra effort.

  3. Dress for the part. Make sure you’re dressed appropriately for your audience. Take this time in your career to invest in your work wardrobe. You’d be surprised how many people don’t wear a suit to a job interview.

  4. Put your phone and laptop away during meetings. Unless it’s absolutely necessary, show your colleagues/clients/whomever your meeting with that you respect them enough to have their undivided attention.

  5. Be on time. This applies to meetings, conference calls, events…everything! This was one of the more valuable pieces of advice I received from a former boss: “When you’re late, you’re saying your time is more valuable than mine.”

Kristine Esposo is a Senior Project Manager at Burson-Marsteller.