Over the years, I’ve had several colleagues, mentees and coaching clients ask what they can do to boost their career. I wish there was a career fairy who could magically conjure up a great title and high-paying role, but sadly that doesn’t exist. My response is usually that it takes meticulous career planning, goal setting and hard work.
While there is no secret sauce, there are some documented, tried and true tips that should be leveraged. This article will help anyone interested to push their corporate career into overdrive.
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A growth mindset seeks out new challenges, has a more positive disposition, and learns from mistakes - getting better at each attempt.
Try these 4 Tried and True Tips:
1) Higher Education & Professional Development: Yes – having your MBA does make you a more attractive candidate. All things being equal, most employers will select a candidate with some level of higher education over a candidate without it. Why? For one, it proves when you set your mind to something you are able to see it through to completion. That’s a quality any employer will admire in a candidate. Furthermore, it demonstrates your ability to collaborate with others. Graduate School is full of group assignments and team presentations. However, if you aren’t able to commit to a full-time program, you can always take a Mini-MBA like the ones offered at Rutgers. You’ll get up to speed with the latest trends and increase your network. Two things that can really help enhance your career.
2) Update your Resume: Most people wrongly assume they will hunt for their next job on their terms, but if COVID has shown us anything, it’s that changing our roles won’t always happen on our timeline. Don’t let complacency catch you off guard. Any company reaching maturity or under-delivering promised value to shareholders or missing their targets will have to consider cost-cutting measures. One of the easiest levers can be a Reduction in Force (RIF). Having an updated resume ensures you are always ready for the unexpected. Check out this helpful article for more tips on resume writing: https://www.resume-now.com/job-resources/resumes/tips-future. Then set a calendar reminder for every six months to revisit and refresh your resume. You can rest easy knowing you’ll be prepared to hit the job market at a moment’s notice.
3) Change your Attitude: Maybe you’re getting passed over for that corner office job for a reason other than your qualifications. When I say attitude, I’m not talking about your ‘resting bitch face,’ a phrase I personally despise because it implies only females can suffer from it. Perhaps we should start telling guys they have resting jerk face? I’m talking about your mindset. As Carol Dweck has labeled it, people either have a fixed mindset or a growth mindset. Someone with a fixed mindset will run from a challenge, blame others, and find it difficult to move out of their comfort zone. A growth mindset on the other hand, seeks out new challenges, has a more positive disposition, and learns from their mistakes getting better at each attempt. Chances are if you have a fixed mindset, you’ll have a harder time moving forward in your career. Sometimes this isn’t easily identifiable on your own. A few sessions with a life coach could be helpful so you can more clearly see your roadblocks and change your perspective.
4) Make your Intentions Known: Don’t assume others know what you want your next career move to be. Find a tactful way to make your intentions known. Mid-year reviews are a great time to sit down with your manager to let him/her know what you’d like to do next. Have a clear plan for how you’d like to achieve your goals and point out where you could use their help. For example, if you’d like to get into a Project Management role, you could ask for their support to attend a PM course once a week for 6 weeks. Alternatively, you could ask them to introduce you to someone in the PM department for a “shadow day” to see first-hand what they do. If you aren’t getting the support you need, find someone in a different department that can champion you. If you’re really talented your boss might selfishly be holding you back from opportunities, so they don’t have to find a replacement. That’s not a team you want to stay in for long!
Now you're ready to jumpstart your career and start making moves! Hopefully you found these career-boosting tips helpful. Let me know how you’ve boosted your career by posting a comment below.