BYU grad student writes book to help kickstart careers


Finding a job after graduation just became easier.

Nathan Tanner is a BYU grad and now an author. He published his book, “Not Your Parents’ Workplace,” in March 2015 to help students find a job after graduation. According to Tanner, the purpose of the book was to “to share an intimate and transparent account” of the highs and lows he has experienced throughout his career and to teach vital principles that enable readers to find their dream jobs.

Nathan Tanner
“Not Your Parents’ Workplace,” the career management book, is available for purchase now.

Tanner received his undergrad in 2008 and worked various finance jobs for five years before returning to BYU to start the MBA program. After many “unique” career experiences, Tanner realized he had a passion for helping people manage their own careers.

“As an undergrad, I was the president of the investment banking club, helping people get jobs on Wall Street,” Tanner said. “In the Bay Area, I was the president of an alumni chapter, helping people build relationships.”

Tanner is currently an ambassador working for LinkedIn and helping people better understand how to use the employment-based social network to find a job. After gaining some experience, he decided to write the book based on what he learned.

“With all of these experiences in mind, I had some extra time,” Tanner said. “I was thinking, ‘It was my last year in the MBA program; what do I want to accomplish?’ And I decided to write a book.”

According to Tanner, in the past, people found a career type job and stayed at the same job for many years. It’s become common for people to jump around between jobs, acquiring different skills and experience.

In an excerpt in the book’s introduction, Tanner wrote of the contrast between his and his father’s work experiences. He wrote about his father working at two companies during the first 30 years of his career. In contrast to his father’s work experience, Tanner had already worked at three within a year of graduation. According to Tanner, there were many unforeseen events and circumstances outside of his control that forced him to make the switch.

Scott Hill, an accounting student from California, acknowledged the need for such a book. According to Hill, many students look to their parents and teachers for help with finding jobs or networking. “It’s a nice thought, but neither of those groups can really provide the kind of help that students need,” Hill said.

Hill also noted Tanner’s workplace experience, making the book more helpful for him. “He’s had some great successes but also has endured some pretty big failures,” Hill said. “This gave him some unique perspective that not many other people his age have had.”

The book is productive in helping graduating students to build a strong personal network and to adequately prepare for job interviews. At the end of each chapter, the book features a brief anecdote from Tanner’s own experiences to help apply the counsel to the reader individually.

Matthew Hobbins is a BYU accounting student from California and another one of the book’s proponents. He gave Tanner friendly advice during the writing of the book.

“If you’re anything like me, you worry if you’re in the right major … or taking the right classes or pursuing the career that you’ll enjoy,” Hobbins said. “But Nathan Tanner is a great example of having that focus in his own career and shares insights that help me and will help all who read this book.”

“Not Your Parents’ Workplace” is available on Amazon.

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