The 15 Things Every 20-Something Needs In Her Career Toolkit

Illustrated by Louisa Cannell.
I’m not great with my hands (even my handwriting is mostly illegible), but I do love a good toolkit. Stashed away out of sight, I can take it out at a moment’s notice to fix everything from leaky pipes to crooked picture frames. I don’t need it most days, but when I do, I’m covered.

I have lots of similar “toolkits” in my life — if I’m on the go, I have some combination of Tide To Go pens, lip balm, and gum in my purse. My gym bag is always one sports bra away from being ready to take me from yoga to the locker room to work. Maybe it was my years as a Brownie, but I like being prepared.

Not all my toolkits are physical. Like anything else, a career needs a little fine-tuning or TLC every once and awhile, too. And having a fully stocked career toolkit pays off — it means you’ll be ready to jump into any situation, be it a new job search or run-in with your boss’ boss’ boss, without breaking a sweat.

Ahead, the 15 things every 20-something needs in her career toolkit — no hammering required.