I don't usually post poetic meaningful rambles these days, so I thought I'd throw one your way. One about opportunities for grads.

Now I'd like to say I know everything. But even I know I don't. But I have enough hands in enough pies to be able to see things that from all sorts of angles.

1. Free publicity
There are plenty of ways to publicise yourself. For instance Bjorn and Sophie created 'Keep Aaron Cutting'. And Lewis and Alex got their website in the Metro, and you can too. I could reel off plenty more, but I'll let you do the leg work with links. But think of how to get publicity in Campaign, The Drum, Creative Review or the press. There are plenty of ways to go the extra mile for yourself. Find one. And then go nuts.
2. Networking
It's so easy. Yet so easily underestimated. Tweet people in your industry. Email others. Comment on blogs. Send round cool stuff. If you sound interesting, people will want to meet you. The worst thing you can do is overlook social networks, including LinkedIn.
You'll get loads of opportunities through networking. They might pass your folio on to people higher up, take you for drinks to meet other creative folk and getting book crits is easier too. The YCC have a 'Friends Of' section that also has plenty of names and emails on. Use it. That's what it's there for.

3. Reply to emails and quickly
Recently there was an opportunity I was in charge of. There was a call for submissions and then a change in plan. I emailed the 30 or so student teams that had already applied to tell them of the change in plans. And I needed a reply ASAP from them to confirm they were still interested. I got only 18 replies. And then 4 more after the deadline had passed, which meant they weren't considered. So 12 teams lost out on a fantastic opportunity purely on not reading / replying to an email.

4. Not being a knob
There are certain people that get a reputation for certain things. I'd like to think I can have an opinion and express this online without slagging off people. Others on the other hand, can't.
If you're a student / grad and are looking for work, the last thing you need to do is make enemies. The internet is actually a very small place. And word travels fast. Be careful what you say. If people ask others for opinions and they remember you for the wrong reasons, you're stuffed.

5. Not sitting on your arse waiting for 'something to come along'
If you've not got a placement / job yet, it's because you've not been looking hard enough. I run Ad Job Wall because there are lots of jobs out there that you guys should know about. But there are many more I don't put out there. Because I'm not going to them and pestering them. Go visit agencies, have book crits, do stuff that doesn't involve waiting for something to be handed to you on a plate.

6. Going where the work is
I've done this twice. And I know half the fun is going to a random city and trying something new. I started in London, went to Edinburgh because of point 5. Had far too much fun for two years. Headed back to London. Spent six months there and now I'm in Leicester.
I love seeing places and experiencing new things. And with no reason to stay in one place, I can make the most of great opportunities elsewhere. So what if there's a job in Newcastle or Birmingham? If it's your perfect role, go. Permanent doesn't mean a life sentence. Learn and, in time, move on. Follow your head, not your heart.

7. Take a step back
Think, is this really want you want? You don't have to find your dream job first time. In fact, it's probably impossible. But there are plenty of jobs out there that do similar roles but in different areas. I found a mate a PR role because journalism is having a tough time. Granted it's not 'the same' but it's close enough. It won't do her prospects or CV any harm. Whereas being on the dole or working in McDonalds could.

And finally, our new agency in Leicester, BIG Communications, is looking for a junior digital designer and an account exec. Drop me an email if you're interested. I've even just presented two opportunities to you just for simply by reading my blog. I'll say no more.