5 tips to keep your unemployed graduate motivated

May 10, 2016

Is your newly minted college graduate meandering (read unemployed?)

As a parent of a recent college graduate, we feel proud. The cap has been tossed and the toasts have been made. The dorm supplies have been shipped or donated and your child is headed off to their first job with snazzy new shoes and a great new suit.  All is right with the world.  You’ve done your job. Your kid has launched. 

Or not. What happens if they haven’t landed yet and are headed home to start looking for a job? 

For 18 years your son or daughter has had a tremendous amount of external structure: school hours, teacher’s deadlines, meal times, play times, college registration dates, test and exam dates, and so on.  Now the structure has disappeared and things can get messy fast. Here are some ideas to keep them motivated:

TIP 1:  Help her create and stick to a schedule each day. Encourage her to get dressed every morning as if she were going on an interview. Help her find a space (preferably out of the house), to conduct her search.  Maybe you could ask for a small corner in your office where she can work once or twice a week. Maybe it’s a condition of moving back in for the first 6 months?  Ask us to share our “Launch Contract” with you if the conversation about this doesn’t go well.

TIP 2:  Work with him to develop a living budget, one that includes financial responsibilities (think rent), and suggest he sets up a Mint account to get organized and accountable.

TIP 3: Open up your Linkedin account, connect with your daughter, and teach her how to use the program in the most productive and professional way possible.  Read this article for great ideas and insights.

TIP 4: If it looks as if he is really stuck and has no idea what he wants and how to figure it out, buy him a copy of The Defining Decade, by Dr. Meg Jay. She makes some excellent suggestions, all of which are in line with the world he is stepping into, a world that can offer great opportunities but also scary obstacles.

TIP 5: If you find yourself micro-managing their search, step back and find a mentor to take them through the process.  Call us to see how we can help. 


  • Wisdom from 30-Somethings to Parents

    Hey there. We made it to Question 3 in our Wisdom from 30-Somethings Blog. “What would you tell your parents to do differently if you could reflect back on their parenting when you were a teenager and young adult?” Here is a fusion of their answers: Have your child take courses or an elective in

    More Wisdom From 30-Somethings To 20-Somethings

    More Wisdom From 30-Somethings To 20-Somethings The second question I asked my former 20-Something clients (now in their 30’s), uncovered some wisdom about values and priorities. The question was, “What do you define as success now, vs when you were in your early 20’s?” Here are their answers: “When I was 20 I was focused on

    30-Somethings Talk to 20-Somethings

    When we get older, we get wiser, but it’s tough to listen to wisdom because it sounds boring and cliché. So I interviewed some former clients, now in their 30’s and asked them to pass on some wisdom. Simply put I asked them a few questions. The first one was, “What would you tell your

    From Bored to Happy in 90 Days

    Situation Analysis: Violet, 26, was ‘stuck’ in a job that she believed had little upward career trajectory. Her brain was in “atrophy” as she put it, and she needed a more dynamic environment in NYC, with potential to earn more and build new professional muscles.  She is an improv fanatic and has a charismatic and

  • Reshaping the lives of your millennial clients

    A “Private” Trust Company family member was having a difficult time helping his 25-year old daughter launch after several false career starts. The dynamics in the family were challenging as there were multiple children and several layers of family wealth.  The expectations were high and the daughter felt tremendous pressure to be successful. Jo Leonard

    A student with a purpose is a motivated student

    Does your High School student need some career direction before college? Justin came to us as a junior in high school with a 3.6 GPA, 30 on the ACT and excellent community and leadership experiences under his belt.  Our assessments told us he was a Persuasive Innovator, with an interest in serving underprivileged communities.  He

    Offers are in but what’s the deal with the waitlist?

    This year has proven once again, that the college admissions process is far from fair and equal, a tough reality for Millennials who’s life has not yet been tainted too much by the unfair nature of big business. And so you may have a sad or grumpy high school senior on your hands.  Here are

    College Consultants – Need to improve their services

    College Consultants – Need to improve their services For the last few years the focus of College Consultants has been on “getting your kid into the best college possible.” But now with the cost of college elevated beyond reason, and the market demanding Millennials be focused, capable, and fully prepared post-graduation, the days of “hoping