When the calendar turns to January 1st, we begin imagining how the new year will unfold. Make this year the one you go beyond imagination and act now! Your career is already in your hands, and you have the power to shape it.
Despite the current economic recession, the staggering unemployment rate, or the general lack of job security, the situation may not be as dire as initially believed. It may seem challenging to advance your career during stagnant times, but it is not impossible.
In order to further your career this year, take a look at the following tips:
Set clear goals for yourself
Your number one priority must be defining your goals. A lack of clarity about what you want will lead to a lack of clarity about how to achieve it. Even the best efforts you make to advance can be thwarted by this. Take a moment to consider the parts of your life that you are satisfied with and the parts that you wish you could change. Could you be looking for a new position? How about a promotion? Taking on more responsibilities while staying in your current position? Once you have identified what you want, you can take steps toward achieving it.
As soon as you have set your goals, it's time to create an action plan. Identify the steps you must take to succeed, then divide them into smaller, more manageable steps. Make a list of the skills you hope to acquire, improve, or strengthen, and then determine how you'll accomplish this. To accomplish the big goal, create a timeline with micro-goals that you can check off as you go.
Also, make sure that you take advantage of every opportunity to demonstrate your commitment toward your current organisation. We tend to assume that our bosses know what's best for us and we'll be rewarded automatically. The reality is, if we fail to differentiate ourselves from the crowd, it may lead to our work being undeservedly overlooked. Therefore, do not hesitate to ask for what you want and make sure that management understands your expectations.
Identify career progression paths through research
The next step is to research career paths that match your long-term career goal. Identify individuals in your ideal field who have had successful careers. You can do this by searching up a few people with the title you want to achieve and see what they have done to get where they are now. LinkedIn is a great tool for this! Try also searching for job advertisements and reading their requirements. By doing so, you'll get an idea of what you need to work towards and what skills or experience you need to gain.
Develop your professional skills
In order to develop yourself, you need to take advantage of all the available learning opportunities. By learning new skills, you also avoid boredom and stagnation at work. There are several options available, including online courses, live virtual training, business coaching, or simply reading a book. You can learn in any way you like.
The benefit of taking online courses and live virtual trainings is that you can develop specific skills and earn certifications or professional development credits at the same time. These skills or courses can be added to your resume to showcase your abilities and help you land a promotion.
Don't settle for anything less than what you deserve. You should always strive to learn new skills, to take advantage of new opportunities, and achieve new goals. It's important not to get too comfortable in your career, hoping that it will someday turn into what you want.
It may be time to move on from your current employer if career advancement isn't available. Taking career risks and finding a position that aligns with your career goals is vital. Acquire more knowledge, look out for new career possibilities, and be more proactive when there aren't any new opportunities.