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I recently read this fantastic article on the whole phenomenon of the younger generation’s sense of “entitlement”, especially in the job market. Whether you’re a millennial who feels misunderstood or a member of the older generations who just don’t understand this shift in attitude, the article is a really eye-opening read. You can check it out here. As someone in the corporate world, I have seen the tremendous power that the creativity and tech-savvy of younger workers have, and the unwavering loyalty and dedication that older workers who have been with the company for some time contribute. We spend far too much time discussing which mentality is best in the workplace, and not enough time discussing how different mindsets can be leveraged to achieve more. Here are some tips for millennials who are working in corporate America.

40 hours is not enough

Many recent college grads are put off by their 9 to 5 work schedule, and don’t even consider that they should actually be working beyond it. Once you’re in a salaried position, your career is about doing the best work you can possibly do, not just being in your desk at the assigned times. Staying late and showing up early a few times a week shows commitment and gives you the time to go above and beyond.

Communicate more

One perception of millennials is that they are too technology-dependent, especially when it comes to communication. Try knocking on your boss’s door instead of shooting an email every time. Showcasing your traditional communication skills is just as important as being tech-savvy.

Learn how to network

It’s not just about connections on LinkedIn, it’s about being memorable and personable with everyone you meet. Create a positive impression on upper management so that you have the opportunity to continue and grow within the company.

Suit up

When you’re young and may not be taken seriously as you like, it’s even more important to appear professional. Match the tone of your company by dressing like others you work with. Even subconscious cues that show you are no different from your coworkers can help to be accepted.

Respect your boss

Millennials are often stereotyped as disloyal, so don’t gossip with coworkers or whine about your job unless you want to fulfill the stereotype. Be careful dealing in office politics, especially online.

You may be overworked, underpaid, and underappreciated

The thing no one tells you is that everyone starts out that way. Entry-level jobs are rarely dream jobs, but there is a path to success that requires you to prove yourself hard working before you can reap all of the rewards. It’s worth it, I promise.

About the Author: Ali is a guest contributor from the Executive MBA Program at MSU, take your career to the next level with an integrative management based curriculum. 

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