When you have been at the same job for a while, it is easy to get satisfied and fall into a narrow-minded routine. This may feel comfortable, but it’s a serious impairment to your career development.
To help break out of your job rut and improve your skill set, use the philosophy of zero-based budgeting. Clear the decks and take an objective look at everything you are doing. You may find that some of your job tasks could be done more efficiently, while others may not even be necessary at all. Once you have a list of tasks that seem useless or inefficient, start cutting and streamlining immediately. The change may be a little painful, but you’ll finally have time to focus on your larger career development, instead of getting bogged down in details. The following are guidelines on how to get ahead in your career.
That means, you always need to be looking for new opportunities, as well as building a strong online presence so that you’ll attract them, too. This is not to say that you should be job-hopping all the time, stay in one role for at least a year, unless you’re presented with an opportunity you can’t refuse. If you want to get ahead in your career, don’t close yourself off.
If you’re a job-seeker, you need to prove your worth, and the best way to do this is to act like a consultant. Instead of just applying for a job, make a presentation on how you can add more value to the company. Come with a case study to show that you’ve improved sales of your last client or company by 50 percent or that you helped increase efficiencies that led to a decrease of costs by 70 percent.
Be prepared for your job situation to change constantly. Even if you’re certain of your career path, you could find yourself with a new manager and need to adapt to his or her leadership style on short notice. On the other hand, if you own a company, you might find your business model changes over time based on demand and on how your customers are using your products and services.
You can best position yourself for these changes by understanding your core strengths and gaining skills that can be used across various business functions and roles. Being able to roll with the punches will be key to your long-term success.
You need to build a strong network for several reasons. If you’re around the right people, you will become smarter and more confident about your career. Also, if you get laid off, you’ll have a network to help guide you to new opportunities, finding a job by submitting a resume doesn’t usually work because you’re just one resume in a stack of thousands. Your network can help you cut through the clutter and get noticed.
Note that you will appear to be more valuable when you’re around other ambitious and intelligent people therefore, surround yourself with people who will build you and your career up, not bring you down.