5 things that have helped me the most in my career.
“Don’t wish it were easier; wish you were better.” – Jim Rohn.
One of the things that I am really proud of is my career, and the work that I have put in to get me to the point where I am at today. Let my start by saying that getting ahead in my career hasn’t exactly been a walk in the park. Countless sacrifices, long hours and burnout have just been a few side effects of striving to get ahead.
There are a few strategies and practices that have helped me to get promoted and progress in my career:
1. BE OPEN TO LEARNING
One of the greatest gifts I have given myself is to be open to learning, and commit to continuous improvement. If you go through life with the attitude that you know better than everyone, then you will miss on valuable knowledge, insights and information shared by others. Be open to learning, say yes to attending conferences, training and seminars, and listen to what others have to say. The more you open your mind to new knowledge and information, the more you’ll be able to grow and progress.
2. INVEST IN PERSONAL & PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
A few years ago I made a commitment to myself to invest in my personal and professional development, and to become the best version of myself I could possibly be. This commitment has included the development of daily routines and practices, such as reading one non-fiction book per month and swapping radio for podcasts on my morning commute. It has also required to open myself up to new experiences, such as working with a personal coach to help conquer my fears and sharpen my public speaking skills.
Often the things that make us the most uncomfortable and the things we need to work on the most. Recognise what your own areas of opportunity are and continually work on them. Investing in your personal and professional development can often pay the biggest rewards.
3. CONSISTENTLY ADD VALUE
One of the things I strive to achieve through any conversation, meeting or interaction is to add value. Rather than engaging in office gossip, consider what you are going to bring to the table. Perhaps it’s an improvement to a current system or process, or it could be working towards achieving good outcomes in a particular situation.
One of the ways I’ve been able to achieve this is to make the lives of the senior executive team easier. By doing my job really well and delivering good outcomes, it reduces their workload and helps them to focus on their own tasks. Always ask yourself the question “how am I going to add value in this situation?” or as Ann Miura-Ko would put it – “how am I going to deliver a world-class performance?”
4. BE A PROFESSIONAL
If you want to be taken seriously in the workplace, you need to act professionally. That’s not to say that you can’t have a laugh with others, but there’s a time and a place. Being professional extends to treating others with respect, not gossiping about your peers or Managers, and not openly disregarding or speaking negatively about the decisions of your Manager or the Company. That’s not to say you can’t voice your issues or concerns – but do so by following the proper protocol.
5. DRESS THE PART
“Don’t dress for the job you have, dress for the job you want.” – Manish Ranjan.
The way you show up says a lot about who you are and the way you want to present yourself to the world. If you want to get ahead in your career, you have to dress the part for it too. Take pride in your personal appearance, have a few good staple outfits that elevate your outfit – whether it is a classic blazer or a good pair of shoes. Whatever your personal style may be, always look polished and presentable – it does not go unnoticed.
GETTING AHEAD IN YOUR CAREER
What are some of the strategies or practices you’ve used to get ahead in your career? I would love to hear your thoughts and experiences, please leave your comments below!