5 Lessons Learned From My First Year Working Corporate

Thursday, February 16, 2017

This is me in my natural habitat. Rushing through the streets of New York wearing all-black with a slight twist, of course. The brief time I spend walking outside before and after work is often my most introspective. Often times I leave work in a blur, wondering how the day has passed so quickly, or how a year has gone since I started working. It's all a part of adulting, right?

The past year of transitioning from college student to corporate girl has been one of significant change to say the least. In college your professors say they're preparing you for "the real world", but I'm not sure that anything really can. It all sort of rushes in without warning, challenging you, but also growing you every day. In hope of showing my support for anyone making the transition as well, I'm sharing five things I've learned from my first year in the corporate world.

1. Your boss won't be your best friend, but they'll be an integral part of your experience. The corporate hierarchy is a funny thing. It's a ladder that seems to never end. But maintaining a good relationship with your boss is everything, and the best thing to do is not only collaborate with them, but leverage them. Chances are your boss has done something right to get them to that level. And though you may not agree with them 100% of the time, use the opportunity to learn from them. No matter the strength of your relationship, you'll still have to spend 80% of your week with this person -- make it worthwhile.

2. Don't give up your hobbies. Time management is one of the quickest challenges you face when a full-time job comes around. It's easy to let the hours and days pass you when work gets hectic. Though I've had my fair share of long days at the office, I'm not one to let it take over my life. It is so important to maintain the passions that make you unique. Whether it's boxing or blogging, those side hobbies will fuel your energy and personality.

3. Build a community. Chances are if you're working corporate, you have a solid amount of coworkers. I work at a particularly large company, and the amount of people there are to meet is almost overwhelming. Regardless of your feelings about your work, it's only healthy to make friends at a place that occupies the majority of your time. I personally volunteer for events whenever possible and grab lunch with coworkers I don't often see to make sure I'm maintaining connections. Why not enjoy these 40-50 hours of each week?

4. Be your own cheerleader. The harsh reality of adulting is that no one is holding your hand anymore. There will always be people in your life for support, but ultimately you drive your development and career. We don't get prizes for doing something right, and we can't expect them. Take note of the things you've accomplished. Don't let people forget them. In the corporate world you only get what you ask for, and even that needs backup. The main challenge I've experienced comes from comparing myself to others, which I've learned is unreasonable in the workplace. We all have our own paths, and it's our job to carve them.

5. Protect your health. A corporate career might be healthy for your wallet, but it certainly is no friend to personal health. Hello, regular massages and trips to the eye doctor. Whatever it is that you do to maintain your health, keep it up. I am personally guilty of slacking on my once regular workout routine, and I've definitely felt the repercussions. Eat your greens, avoid snacking too frequently, and get some fresh air during the day. Any small thing you do to put your body first helps in both the short and long term. After all, your life lasts much longer than one job.

Photo Credit: Van Le

Vest: Zara (similar) | Top: Zara (similar here) | Bag: Marc Jacobs
Shoes: Tommy Hilfiger (similar here) | Necklace: c/o Lydell NYC 


  1. These are super helpful to me since I have not even started my "big girl" job yet! Thanks for posting!


  2. These lessons are very helpful. Adore the bell sleeves and boots, very chic!


  3. These are all great tips for people new in the job and everyone else. I love maintaining a good relationship with your boss. You may have unions to back you up if need be but you live the daily experience on site. I love your shoes!!!


  4. Thanks for sharing your tips :) I love your boots by the way x

    Pink Frenzy

  5. Beautiful photo, Dear ♥
    I'd be happy friendship blogs.
    Julia Shkvo

  6. Yes, I second everything you've said. One of the most crucial things for me is maintaining life/work balance. It's a challenge at times though.


  7. Congratulations on making it a year into the real world without being found crying in a corner! I think I say that from experience. It's hard, but I love that you learned some crucial tips on how to make it. I'd love to say that it gets easier, it doesn't. But on the bright side, you'll become more intelligent, creative, and resilient. Especially being your own cheerleader you will continue to pave your own way in this world in a way that no class could ever teach you. Keep it up girl!

    Danielle <3

    1. Thank you so much!! This is such a sweet comment. :)

  8. I love these tips Christina. I like how universal some of them are and how some can apply to my current situation of juggling school and work while also trying to find time for the things that make me, me. Keep up the great work your content has been killer lately.

    xo Janeese | xo.Janiecy.xo

    1. Wishing you the best of luck with school/work! Thank you so much for your comment on my content too. :)

  9. Great Look, love your Fab booties

  10. Great advices dear!!! You look wonderful in total black outfit, I love your shoes :-) Happy weekend Christina :-)

  11. I love your lifestyle posts and these are all great tips! I'm such a huge proponent for having fun at work. It makes work so much bearable especially when you spend so much time there!


    1. Thank you for always stopping by, Tina! You're so sweet!

  12. Bem legal você compartilhar seus aprendizados conosco.
    Amei seu look.
    Bom fim de semana!

    Blog Breshopping da Dany
    Conheça também o Breshopping da Dany KIDS

  13. Thanks for sharing these tips, 4 and 5 are really important. You look good in all black.

    Bernie, xx
    The Style Fanatic

  14. This post is really inspiring, in special the "Don't quite your hobbies" subject!
    Love it! :D
    Thanks for the inspiration


  15. Glad these photos turned out well. Super glad to hear that you even made it to a year since- I didn't LMAO. But as great as these tips are, I'm glad I have you in real life to talk about these things with :) x


  16. Yes, I won't give up on my hobbies as they will eventually turn into passion! Just like blogging. :)

    Kat | Nested Thoughts

  17. You look beautiful. I like black colour ;)

  18. A great entry, I love your blog !!! happy day!!!

  19. lovely blog :)
    have a nice weekend :)


  20. Stunning look!
    Have a nice week-end!
    Gil Zetbase

  21. love your all black look, you look great! Love point 4, it's so accurate. No one is going to commend you for doing the right thing but you should still do it. I'm not in the corporate world but these tips were still very helpful, thanks for sharing. xx


  22. I agree with the list, I'm a corporate worker too for as long as I can remember :) I love your all black outfit and that starry boots, it's so cute. Would like to explore NY one day soon.


  23. You've learned a lot in just a year! these are great lifelong lessons!


  24. Such a great inspiring post babe...I love the way you hv styled this outfit hun...xo, Neha


  25. I couldn't have said this any better! Very accurate post you have here.

    Funmi x

  26. I love your ruffles sleeves on this dress so lovely !

  27. dear this total black look amazing on you, very glam style
    new post on my blog <<< fashion blogger >>>
    have an happy day, kisses

  28. ooo I would love to be running around the streets of New York! lovely post x

    Liz | LotsofLoveLiz

  29. These are wonderful advice and they are very practical even for non corporate jobs and life in general. I am currently being a little challenged with managing my time and keeping up with my hobbies, but this is so important because it really helps me unwind.
    Thank you for sharing :)
    Sauniya | Find Your Bliss ♡

  30. These are really fabulous points and I totally agree. Also taking care of mental health is very important.

    Inez | http://bit.ly/2lRXYoM

  31. I loved reading this and totally agree. It's better to maximize your time at work cultivating relationships with your boss and coworkers than to just do the bare minimum to survive.

    jennnngo | twitter | insta | latest post

  32. I've been working for a few years now, and completely agree with all of these. Some of them were lessons learned through tough experiences, but that's why I remember them so well.

    Hope you're having a great start to the week! xo

    Katie | Willow and White

  33. i love this corporate outfit. thanks for the tips, they do make a lot of sense actually! from now on i'll try to remember them and apply to my life

    xo, Carla


Latest Instagrams

© Looks by Lau. Design by FCD.