How to Handle and Set Yourself Apart for Jobs as a Professional

Our Speaker, Mr. Jeff Ludwig, began the meeting by discussing careers and all the different opportunities out there for young professionals. He reflected on his own background discussing how he worked for UPMC and said he gained immense experience from that position. Touching further on that point, he noted he wanted to do more with his career. Due to this understanding, he pursued sports teams, and was able to tie his background in data analytics with his love for sports by acquiring a position with the Pittsburgh Penguins. This reflection upon his own experiences hits on his main point of how it was important to enjoy your job and to find something that you are truly passionate about.


Early on, Mr. Ludwig asked what he called his three basic questions to the room. These questions were: what do you enjoy, what are you good at, and what do businesses need. The purpose of the questions was to get people thinking about themselves, and potential careers for themselves. Mr. Ludwig discussed how sometimes the career people end up in may not have been one they necessarily think of when thinking of that career. This idea was expanded on when he discussed how careers can be blended. For instance, music and engineering or, in his case, data analytics and sports. 


Mr. Ludwig then proceeded to discuss what made him stand out as a candidate, and then proceeded to expand his message to what makes people stand out to potential employers. One point he talked about was how he was the organizer for a hockey team back in college, and how this made him stand out. He mentioned how this showed the Penguins he was a leader because he was the organizer for the team and the fact it was sports related shows that he would work harder because he was interested in sports. This example was specific towards Mr. Ludwig, however, branched out and showed how this could apply to other positions too. A few examples he discussed pertain to having internships, having leadership experience in a professional setting, having no typos in resumes, etc. All of these aspects will help a candidate stand out to potential employers. This discussion then transitioned into the importance of volume when trying to find a position that one would love. Mr. Ludwig said he applied to 154 different positions and turned down some of those offers before he accepted the job by the penguins. His point here was that volume will allow you the opportunity to choose the job that will suit you best in all aspects.


As Mr. Ludwig was concluding he left the room his key takeaway. His message was to work hard now in high school and college, ensuring that you push yourself because it will set you up for the best position to succeed early on in your career. He talked about how, with any job or position you find yourself in, it is important to enjoy it because your overall life will be better because of it. As such, he recommended making a list and making at least six bullet points of what you enjoy about your job. 


Thank you on behalf of PR-FBLA for your time and all the insight you provided Mr. Ludwig


-Sami Saah, Reporter