How To Create Work Experience Before You Get Your First Job

  | 3 min read

The biggest obstacle to fresh graduates has always been the fact that all the good jobs require a seemingly unattainable number of years in work experience.

How can you jump this hurdle?

Doing internships and volunteering for any NGO or organizations that will take you is fine, but what if internships and volunteering opportunities are not forthcoming?

You can create a highly focused portfolio for yourself, and design it to get you a job placement in the exact industry and department that you would like to work in.

If you’re interested in Public Relations, you can create a great social media presence and build a blog to develop your communication skills.

If you’re an engineer, you can play around with your mother’s old radio and see if you can upcycle it into something new.

You can create an app, or redecorate your big sister’s house, or offer to design logos for your best friend’s business. You can even take a free online course in any field you like.

The possibilities are endless!

Think of them as passion projects or experimental businesses. For best results, choose something that you already love and can see yourself making a career out of, and make sure it’s a low risk environment where failure will not cost you much.

Setting it up this way will unleash your creativity because you’ve eliminated the pressure to succeed and opened yourself up to a world where your ideas are all valid and worthy of pursuit.

Try new methods, improve on the old, challenge the norm and record all your results – failures and successes alike. Before long, you’ll notice an improvement in both your knowledge and confidence.

Including all of these self taught skills in your CV will automatically make you stand out from the crowd of inexperienced peers applying for the same job.  If you do it right, you might even come across as better qualified than people with working experience!

The fact that you’re able to take a project from the initial stages of idea generation to execution will speak volumes in your favor. It will demonstrate that you’re disciplined and able to work without supervision.

Talking about all the mistakes or problems you encountered and how you dealt with them successfully will validate your problem solving skills.

You can even record the quantifiable outcomes like amount of time taken to complete a given project, number of social media followers gained, or new clients you’ve picked up along the way as a result of positive recommendations from your friends and family.

Having a valuable point of difference in your CV will naturally encourage your prospective employers to focus on that when they interview you and since you’ll be talking about a subject that you’re already passionate and knowledgeable about, you’ll avoid all the awkwardness and uncertainty that comes with trying to guess which answers your interviewers want to hear.

Aside from steering your career path and giving you an added advantage during job interviews, passion projects also put you in a position to develop a different perspective or discover a new idea.

Who knows, you could become the next great inventor!



  1. Your experience is well understood but the problem is where on the CV those passionate experiences fit.Thanks for your contribution.

    • Well, on the Cv there is a section for one’s interests and hobbits or passion. That section allows you to express this side of yourself.

  2. About Public Relations is it only about building a platform on social media? are there no any other ways of creating work experience and what kind of stuff should be used to start over?? thanks

    • Well, public relations includes quite a lot of things. We would advise that you research as much as you can on the subject and meet people who have also been in this field.

  3. Online courses are flexible and it helps improve your knowledge and in most cases dont require transcripts so if only one is determined, they can take it up and even find out wat they really want to do in life. Thats the beauty of volunteering

  4. This is a great article. It’s encouraging to say the least. Thank you so much. Hardly doubted that one could add his/her personal experience on the CV.

  5. getting a job placement is not easy as even volunteering is. however, internship and volunteering become more interesting than being jobless. most cases companies absorb volunteers because of their hard work and patience. Therefore, patience and hardwork is part of this journey to get a good job. Endlessly, Honesty, integrity and trustworthy is important.

  6. As matter of fact, I have figured out something. Can u imagine I have a small business and I had not included it among my experiences .ghosh . Yoy never know I would have been one the most experienced in the past applications

  7. Thanks for all your emails and tireless efforts. I really appreciate, though am still hunting for any company hiring a five year experienced electrician holding an Ordinary Diploma in Electrical Engineering from a recognized institution.
    Thank You So Much.

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