School’s out for summer! A summer job is a great way to jump-start your career and hone your people skills. Aside from making some extra cash, here are 5 benefits to having a summer job and how to incorporate these skills on your resume.
1. Time Management. A summer job teaches you how to balance work and play. You learn to manage a schedule that you create based on your own availability and priorities. During the school year, academic and extracurricular schedules are made for you. In the summer months, you are responsible for your time and prioritizing workplace responsibilities. When you commit your time to a position, you are practicing time management: an integral skill to have in college and beyond.
2. Networking. A summer job offers the opportunity to learn about positions and opportunities you never knew about. Working at a restaurant may seem like you only have one role, but you are presented with a larger opportunity to learn how a business operates. Use this time to connect with all your team members and clients you serve. Learning more about the different work of various industries gives you respect for different paths of employment. It really expands your horizons. To work a food service job as a young adult is to learn a life-long appreciation for the waiter who is handling a dozen tables on a Friday night.
3. Self Confidence. Have you ever felt nervous starting a new role or learning a new system? A summer job gives you that time to practice learning new skills and building your confidence. Summer employment is typically shorter and temporary. This gives you the space to make mistakes and grow from them. You will learn how to adjust, how to hit the ground running in a new environment and measure your own growth as you see yourself move up in your role.
4. Customer Service. People skills are important! Whether you know it or not, you are in the business of people any time you take on a role that requires working with clients or personnel. You will perfect your communication skills, learn to alleviate concerns and deescalate problems, as well as cultivate a service-based climate in your role. Learning these skills will come in handy all year round, especially when transitioning into your career.
5. Money Management. Everyone loves spending money. Who loves spending money more than adults enjoying summer? A summer job is a good source of revenue for your summer excursions. Sure, you may not amass piles of cash when you get a summer job, but it will make more than if you do NOT get a job. You learn responsibility, practice healthy spending habits, and save for large ticket items when the fall semester comes around.
The best place to search for a summer position is to check out companies and their locations directly. You can often find summer opportunities and student employment on company Career pages. Did you enjoy your shopping experience at a store? Inquire while you’re there what their career opportunities are. Ordered something from an online company and really like their products? Message them on LinkedIn and see what they have available. When it comes to a summer job, it does not have to directly align with your career objectives, but it serves as an opportunity to learn new skills you can use in the future. You lose nothing by asking what roles are available and snagging the summer job that keeps you engaged, excited, and enjoying your summer.