Five Strategies For Taking the Next Step in Your Career

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There’s no doubt about it, the ongoing coronavirus pandemic has disrupted everyday life all over the world for over a year and, despite cautious efforts to get back to normal, some of these changes might be permanent. For example, in an effort to protect yourself and others by keeping social contact to a minimum, you might have been working from home for the past twelve months, or have even been furloughed. As such, this extended period of time might have led you to seriously consider where you are going with your career, if you are happy with your current employment, and what you can do to reinvigorate your life. To help you out and give you some ideas, here are five strategies for taking the next step in your career.

1) Go for promotion

One reason why you no longer feel inspired in your work is because you are bored. However, before you go handing your notice in and searching the new job listings, take a moment to consider what is the route of your boredom. It might be that the industry you are working in no longer inspires you, or it could be that you have simply exceeded the limits of your current position. If the situation is the latter, then it could be a sign that you are ready to take the next step in your career and seek a promotion in your current place of work. Make an appointment with your line manager so that they are aware of your plans to earn a promotion and work with you to help you progress. This might include letting you know when a higher position becomes available within the company, as well as offering you mentoring opportunities with a person currently in your desired position so that you learn the responsibilities and skillset required in that position.

2) Reduce your hours

At the other end of the spectrum to seeking promotion, the current pandemic situation might have led you to seriously consider retirement. However, if you are still a bit away from retirement age, an alternative might be to reduce your hours, perhaps dropping to a part-time contract. By reducing your hours rather than going for complete retirement, you will still have some money coming in every month, but as this will of course mean a drop from your full-time wage, make sure that you are able to afford this change beforehand. Despite a drop in income, working part-time instead of full-time has many benefits, particularly when it comes to looking after your mental health. For instance, you can spend your increased free time with friends and family, or develop your interests and hobbies, all of which can help to massively improve your mental health and boost your satisfaction with life.

3) Pursue further education

Continuing your education is always hugely beneficial for your career, whether you want to progress up the ranks in your current industry, or change your direction completely with a new career path. You might want to specialize in a particular niche, for instance, if you are a registered nurse you may want to specialize in pediatric nursing, in which case a relevant course or Master’s degree can help you to progress. Likewise, if you would like to go into a managerial position, you may find it extremely beneficial to go on a management course to help you develop key skills such as diplomacy, time management and conflict resolution. If you are considering a career change, do some research to find out whether you will need a certain level of education and certification in order to become employed and registered in that field. For example, to become a registered nurse you will first have to complete a Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing before becoming registered in your state. Do not be put off by the thought of spending three years on a Bachelor’s degree program; there are accelerated programs available. Click here for more information about accelerated nursing programs.

4) Look into mentoring

Whether you are the mentor or mentee, everyone benefits from this transferal of knowledge. If you are new to your industry, or would like to be promoted into a particular position, it can be extremely beneficial to seek a mentor in your dream position. Your mentor will be able to provide you with detailed information and industry insights that is relevant to the role, as well as pointing you towards books and training courses that can help to develop your knowledge. Furthermore, by shadowing your mentor you will obtain a greater insight of the responsibilities and skills required in that position, helping you to fully prepare for the next step in your career. Likewise, you can benefit hugely from mentoring a less-experienced colleague. You have the satisfaction of passing on indispensable industry knowledge to the next generation of professionals, as well as helping a colleague achieve their dream position. As well as this, you may get some fresh insights yourself from someone whose ideas have yet to be moulded by the industry.

5) Become self-employed

The thinking space provided by lockdown might have led you to the conclusion that you would like to become self-employed. This mode of working has many benefits: you are answerable only to yourself and you can take home all the profit rather than paying out other employees. However, you do need to be prepared for a lot of hard work and the possibility of quiet periods. Make full use of contacts you have built up whilst working for a larger company – if they know that they can trust your integrity and quality of your work, they will be more likely to hire your services on a freelance basis. Furthermore, ensure that you are networking regularly using sites such as LinkedIn and online marketing. Getting your name out there, supplemented by positive testimonials and reviews from satisfied customers, is a sure-fire way of ensuring that your self-employed business is successful.

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