Career Management and Higher Education
May 13 , 2013

If you're somebody that has haphazardly started off your career and are where you are today as a matter of chance than as a result of deliberate, you only one among a good majority. However it is never too late to make things right and make your career run in the direction you want it to. Although hard work can project your career graph, consistent planning is required to produce best results. Here are some steps you can follow to get started:

Have a goal

A journey without a destination is never realized nor can you have a successful career unless you know what you want. Your goal could be a promotion, a project to be bagged or attaining other milestones. Having a goal helps you focus your actions toward its attainment.

What does it take to get there?

Get yourself familiarized with steps you will need to take to reach your destination. Find out what skills, attitudes and traits are required for a promotion, project, etc. Spend some time to reflect on your positivities and negativities to get clues on what you need to improve on, what skills to hone and what ideals to cultivate. Speak to people who have already got there to get insight and information about the nature of work and what they did to achieve whatever they did.

Talk to your boss

Sit with your boss and discuss your future in the company with him/her. Stress the fact that you want your performance to meet company goals. Share your future career goals and expectations with him/her. Any understanding boss will appreciate this initiative and maturity.

Take Initiative and Show Enthusiasm

There will be times when your company wants to come up with a new project or an expansion plan or diversify from its business, keep your eyes open for such opportunities. Think about how you can contribute in a different environment. Volunteer to handle new and additional responsibilities whenever you can. Have genuine interest in the company's success and welfare and show it to them because that ultimately determines yours.

Stay updated

Keep yourself abreast of happenings and relevant developments in your field. When a suitable opportunity presents itself you will be in a position to capitalize on it. Continue to acquire knowledge in your field and stay tuned to new trends. Make sure your resume is updated of skills needed.

Don't envy competition

Competition at workplace can be healthy and productive, if used correctly. Don't view your competitor as an enemy; you might have to pair up later to face a bigger competition. Take competitions as challenges to better your performance. Use a mentor for a challenge, be a mentor to someone else. See the bigger picture and think of achieving for your department and company rather than for personal gains.

Keep good company

Strengthen your personal network by joining professional organizations and professional networks like LinkedIn, attending industry conferences, and even volunteering. Participate in online discussions and contribute views at forums. Make yourself known and visible to people. The more people are aware of your strengths and abilities, the better your chances of hearing about any new opportunities that might arise. This is also a great way to stay updated about period developments in the market.

Higher education for career development

This is the best time of your life to upgrade your knowledge; skills set and develop your career.  Investing in career development will pay off well later on and help you earn better. Think about your specific, ultimate career goal. This goal should be focused and clear enough to set a path to get there. Career planning is not a one-time affair. It is the ongoing activity and actions that is required to be done to achieve your career goals.

When you have a fair idea of what you want to accomplish you can do an analysis of your

  • Attitude
  • Passion
  • Abilities

These will determine your strengths and weaknesses. Look for a match with your strengths and the job/profession you are considering. With this in mind think about what education (formal or informal) is needed to reach your ultimate goal. What are the professional skills and personal skills you need to develop? Are there any skills or experiences you possess that are relevant to your ultimate goal?

Ultimately the career you wish to pursue must strike a balance between who you are as a person and what you do as a professional.

If you want to study further, then you might need to start saving for your tuition fees from today. For more on careers and courses in finance read the student page.

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