An exciting new initiative for young alumni of the Australian School of Business has enabled recent graduates to compare notes on their transition into the workplace.
Featuring five recent graduates, the panel discussion, 'Confessions of a Recent Graduate,' was attended by over 90 young alumni.
Dush Sharma, Chairperson of
ASB Young Alumni and host of the event, says: "Through the sharing of experiences and the chance to compare and contrast, audience members were able to place their own experiences in the context of other people's."
With the featured panel consisting of representatives from management consulting, accounting, retail banking, investment banking and sales and marketing management, Sharma said common themes quickly emerged.
"Work-life balance and associated challenges were certainly a key theme," he says. "I think one of the universal truths that did come across was that as people became more comfortable with their roles, they were more efficient and better able to manage the balance.
"Another key theme centered on learning to manage workload proactively - or 'pushing back' - which is something very new graduates are reluctant to do. We also touched on office politics, and how to manage your behaviour at company social events. There really were some very honest truths and confessions coming through and I think it was really interesting to see the different approaches to the university-work transition," added Sharma.
Sharma says many audience members found the candid nature of the panel discussion to be reassuring.
"The general feedback was very much along the lines of, 'I didn't realise how similar my experience was, even though I work for a very different company or industry in a different location'", he says. "The commonality of experience transcended that. I think members of our audience could relate to the experience of at least one or more of the panelists, and it was reassuring to hear that the challenges of workplace transitioning were a bit more universal than some of our audience members originally thought."
With Monday's inaugural panel discussion labelled a huge success, Sharma expects more to follow. "I think it's safe to say, given the feedback from this event, that we certainly will be having another young alumni discussion panel in the future."