Why invest in your career? Simple. Because you are the only person who will take it seriously.
Your boss and company may ‘say’ they are interested in you and provide lots of opportunities for you to advance; but if you don’t take them up, will they spend time trying to convince you? No, it’s all down to you, buddy, and, believe me, it’s no laughing matter.
What can you do to enhance your career prospects? How can you invest time and effort in making things better for yourself in the future?
Here are five ideas:
1) Invest in a smaller, more focused, more positive, more valuable group of people in your network, who can help you broaden your perspective. Time is your most precious resource and you need to invest it in people who will serve you well.
Choose LinkedIn groups that will benefit you, not leech from you. Attend speakers’ courses and development programmes and network with people who really want you to succeed.
2) Improve your overall skill-sets, in areas that are important to your career. Are communication skills important for your development? If so, join Toastmasters or a Rotary group where you can develop your speaking skills. Is key knowledge important? Then invest time in finding out more about your how you can help others and yourself to improve.
3) Gather resources that will help you improve. Where should you be investing your money? In areas that will accumulate in the future? What advice are you being given that will take you forward? Trust the people with the right results from the past, and keep up to date with the future forecasters. You owe it to yourself to invest time, effort and money wisely.
4) Be active in your industry. Join networking groups that will enhance your knowledge. Share your knowledge too. Learn as much as you can about it. Become the kind of person that people come to for advice and ideas. Be the kind of person that influences and generates influential decisions. You will become well-known and well-respected.
5) Invest in your own personal progress each day, week and month. Your personal skills will be the only things you will take forward with you, and those skills can be enhanced and developed proactively by always putting your personal development at the top of the pile. It doesn’t need dozens of training courses; it needs dedication, organisation and a keen desire to improve skills exponentially.
This will prove to yourself and everyone else that your career is worth investing in. And it will show people who matter out there that you are worth investing in, too.
Head of Training
Originally published: 4 July, 2012
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