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Having a career vs. a job - how do I become successful? just graduated this may and while I was able to do an internship this summer it was only at a tiny place nobody’s ever heard of. Contind below

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I want to tell you to relax and not be so dramatic but I can remember how every move felt very significant when I was younger and like it would have life long repercussions. I empathize. Don’t forget that with smaller studios and startups you also get an opportunity to level up and are less likely to be stuck below in a hierarchy. Most all career stuff is out of your control. It doesn’t get easier with success. It all just happens and sometimes you are lucky and sometimes you are not. Taking each project in front of you and tearing it apart, not writing off any opportunity, and turning yourself into an amazing designer is in your control. Looking back, nothing jobs I had to take and wasted time with wrong career paths all seem to have taught me important lessons I use everyday. You have to be open to all the lessons that will come at you. Don’t waste precious time being angry at yourself.

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The internship i had before was at also at a small agency and I should have found myself one at a bigger one, that’s more renown. I wasn’t able to find one and went with the tiny place instead of not doing anything. I’m now looking for jobs and I’m wondering if not having a name on my resume will hurt me. Can I still have a career? I’m worried I’ll be stuck at nameless, semi-professional startups that are run by trustfund kids 😕 Ideally I want a more corporate job or in-house with an established/successful product but I’m not sure how to get into those places unless I network and meet someone there. Thanks for your advice

Big names help get your foot in the door quicker—recruiters use them as a gauge of competence. But ultimately the work and how you present it is what the creative team will use to approve or decline you. Just make sure you’re doing solid work, and make sure it’s relevant experience to what you want to do in the future. If your current position doesn’t offer this, do it in the side for friends or as speculative work.

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