5 Steps To Take Your Career to Next Level
If you’ve been struggling to get a promotion or a chance to really take a step up in career—you probably think you’ve tried everything. The reality is, there are loads of simple tips people just don’t think of when they’re trying to take their career to the next level. Some of these might seem too obvious to be true, but they’ve worked time and time again and they really can work for you.
Here we share five ways you can take your career to the next level:
1. Move jobs
Many times you have to move on to move up. If you’ve been in the same role for some time with no advancement in sight, it is likely that your superiors have you pigeonholed there. No matter how hard you work or how much potential you show, it can be difficult to convince people you’re worth it when they’ve seen you in the same position for a long time. They might also consider you an asset for that particular position and don’t want anyone else doing it. Regardless, if you want to get unstuck from this spot, it’s likely you will have to move elsewhere.
I was in this place a few years ago. I loved the firm I was working at, but I was simply stagnant. I was not getting the cases I should be getting for an attorney at my level and I felt over worked, but not challenged (and not to mention underpaid!). So, I took a leap of faith and moved to a smaller firm that had larger advancement potential. Fast-forward a year after I made the move - I was a partner, I had a client base AND a work/life balance! It can be done ladies.
2. Get more qualifications
The more qualified you are—the better position you’ll be in for a promotion. Many employers will actually want to help you get more skills and they may even pay for extra tuition or a course.
You don’t have to give up time working either, as many qualifications can be studied for in the evening (or your employers might even let you take some time off work while still being paid). Knowledge is power and the more you expand your expertise and gain valuable insight into industry trends and development, the better.
I always say the one piece of advice I would give to college students is start building your network sooner. I did not personally understand the value of your network until well into my late 20s and 30s. I can only imagine had I gave it some attention early on. But, it is true, “It’s not what you know, but who you know” rings true today. It’s unfortunate that meritocracy isn’t completely prevalent in every industry, but sometimes you’ve just gotta make sure you know the right people.
There are loads of ways to network, including attending conferences and taking part in team-building exercises. I actually take a two pronged approach to networking - I network professionally but also with my friends. So while I make a point to attend professional conferences, belong to organizations that are aligned with my work, I also try to join clubs or activities that I ENJOY. In fact, sometimes these have proven to be more successful because I get to know people that I share a social interest and we connect over that bond.
Also important, I always always always play nice with my colleagues and superiors. While, workplaces shouldn’t work like this, if you are well-liked by your boss and colleagues, you will be entrusted with more responsibility, included in more events and projects and considered for more promotions.
4. Work harder
Okay, do I even need to say this? You should already be working hard. You might even think it’s impossible to work harder. Especially if you are juggling your career and family, however, simply doing the extra step may make a lasting impression. Taking more initiative at work, being a self-starter on new projects and going above and beyond to make your boss’s life easier are all ways to stand out at work and take your career to the next level.
5. Change industries
Okay, this is a big one! But sometimes it might be the right choice. In rare occasions – you might find you’ve reached the ceiling in your current career. Some industries are harder to progress in than others, or have very few opportunities to move up the ladder. Changing careers is a tough choice, but it’s one some people realize is the right one.
Take a long hard look at your career and work out if it’s really as long term as you think. How much do your bosses earn? How many people actually get to that level and how long does it take? The reason you got into this industry might not be a reason to stay. These are all things you need to analyze before deciding to switch or stick at it.
Do you have any key tips to taking your career to the next level? Comment and share below.