About the Author: Alan Diamond is a 21-year-old Irish graduate that specializes in Marketing, PR & Event Management. He has a degree in PR & Event Management from an Irish University. He moved to New York in August of last year.
Before I moved to New York last year, I wished one of the numerous friends I had living in this great city had told me a few things that might have prepared me for what NYC was to offer. Recent grads move to NYC and other big cities for the best intentions, hoping that more populated areas means more jobs. It’s a big step to relocate – and often necessary when your hometown can’t match what you really want and the big city is where you really aspire to be.
It’s true what they say though: you’re not a New Yorker until you’ve walked in their shoes, or in this case, jaywalked. So regardless of what I might have been warned, this is really a city you have to experience for yourself.
However, here are a few things I think are important for this year’s batch of graduates to know in advance of moving to the Big Apple in search of a job!
- There is no such thing as jaywalking in New York – contrary to what anyone tells you. Cross the street when the crowd crosses. I do suggest though keeping your eyes on the traffic and not on the traffic light waiting for it to turn green – no traffic light ever hit anybody, cars do! You will find everyone is in a rush so you will have to walk at their pace. Don’t just stop in the middle of the sidewalk as most likely you will be bumped into by some businessman or woman on Wall Street rushing to a meeting.
- Invest in a pair of sturdy shoes – ladies especially should not be walking more than a few blocks in high heels, it’s not worth it in the long run. Keep a pair of flats in your handbag, and guys, well a good pair of shoes should be broken in before you try to take on the concrete jungle in them. Remember you will be walking a lot more in NYC – walking to job interviews, to the train, etc.
- Yes, bars stay open until 6am but that doesn’t mean you have to be there until close. It’s like a speed limit; they are not a target to reach. A key note to remember is this: nothing good ever happens between 1:30am and last call. Get home and be up in the morning for another full day of job hunting and/or interviews.
- Know what you want before you get to the front of the line. It annoys the people behind you – who again are always in a rush – and it also annoys the person behind the counter waiting to take your order.
- Get Social – get active on your social media accounts to make a good impression even before you arrive in NYC. For Facebook and Twitter, share relevant content, join the conversation, and engage with others you know are in the city. If you haven’t already, sign up with LinkedIn. Before you move to NYC, you should set up your account and make as many connections as possible. Add all your experience, education, skills and get as many recommendations as possible from lecturers, managers or supervisors you’ve worked for etc. The more pre-preparation you do, the better!