If you’ve ever felt like you’re stuck in the grind of your daily job with no room or chance for upward mobility, you’re not alone. Many people feel like they’re trapped at a certain point in their career, and they’re just not sure of how they can boost their prospects and move forward instead of staying in neutral.
First and foremost, what’s important to realize is that it’s really up to you to move your career forward and in the direction you want. Most people make the mistake of sitting back and hoping new advancement opportunities will come to them, but this isn’t often the reality of what happens.
Other than being proactive and making the decision to move yourself upward, the following are some real-world tips you can use to advance your career, regardless of the industry you’re in.
Create a List of Your Accomplishments
Before you can demonstrate your value to your boss and your business, you need to be able to name what adds up to this value. Take some time to create a list of your accomplishments. This will not only give you the materials you need to complete the next tip on this list, but it will also help you be more self-aware and see if you’re really doing what it takes to get ahead, or if there’s more you could be doing.
Schedule Your Own Performance Review
Not every business is going to have official performance reviews for employees, and even if they do, they might be handled by mid-level HR managers who don’t know what your accomplishments are.
It’s important that you’re not only able to name your accomplishments and how you contribute to your workplace but that you can share these with the right people. Schedule your own performance review with your boss so you can go over what you see as your strengths and valuable accomplishments.
Think About Professional Development and Certifications
Professional development opportunities and certifications are an excellent way to boost not only your career but your marketable skills. Be strategic and take advantage of the possibilities that will be most valuable to you in your industry.
For example, if you’re in the software industry, consider the scrum master certification, or if you’re a marketer, think about becoming an AMA Certified Professional Marketer. e-Learning has provided outstanding opportunities for professionals across all fields to develop their skills and to hone their expertise.
Consider How You Present Yourself
People can become complacent in their job and stop caring about presenting themselves professionally, and that’s a big potential pitfall if you want to move upward. Make sure that you’re thinking about how you come across to your co-workers and bosses, in terms of how you’re speaking, your dress, and your overall attitude. It’s important to convey a sense of approachability, but also strength and professionalism.
As a final note, if you want to step up your career efforts and move upward instead of staying stagnant, make sure you’re always networking. People will often stop networking once they’re in a job role, but to keep moving forward in your career, use every opportunity to network that you have available, particularly within the company you’re already working in.