How to Actively Manage Your Career

Posted on Monday, September 13, 2021 by The Career GuideNo comments

Day in, day out, you go to work. A career in a London-based, office support job can just end up “happening” without any real direction. People make decisions for you, the years tick by, and you may end up feeling like a slave to work.

You need to be in the driving seat of your career, so that it brings you purpose and drive, and you feel energised and empowered. The trick is to choose to manage your career,  rather than just letting it happen to you.

How can you switch it up?

  1. Set out your goals and communicate them

    If you don’t know where you’re headed, how can you expect anyone else to? You need to know what you want and what it will take to get there. These clear goals and objectives should form the framework of your ideal career. You can then take steps to work towards them. In addition, make sure your manager knows about the relevant goals.

  2. Listen to feedback

    It’s easy to get lost on your career path if you’ve got blind spots. The way to get around this is to welcome constructive feedback. Those who are open-minded and resilient enough to listen to genuine feedback and learn from it are the ones who can self-direct their career.

  3. Reframe your experiences

    We see this time and again: someone applies  to a higher-level position, only to struggle at the interview phase because they can’t quantify their skills and experiences. Even if you’re not immediately thinking of moving on, you need to keep a record of your achievements and reframe them so that they really illustrate your success. For example, what money did you save or make, or how did decisions improve business relationships? This becomes your evidence for new opportunities and promotions.

  4. Be involved

    Those who drive their own careers forward read, attend events, network, and generally get involved. They know what’s going on and what opportunities there are because they are “out there”. From sharing relevant things on LinkedIn to choosing to attend a voluntary event in the office, they are seen and informed.

  5. Take opportunities

    Luck isn’t really a thing when it comes to your career. You create the environment for good things to happen. You need to volunteer for new projects, stick your hand up to step out of your comfort zone, and actively seek out new opportunities when you’re ready.

It can be tough to think about managing your career when you’re so busy “doing” it. But most of this is a mindset that can be adopted alongside the everyday stuff. Get into the habit of actively driving your career and you’ll be the one who feels energised and in control, and the one that people look up to, wondering how you did it.

 

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