Have you reached a plateau in your career? Regardless if you are in your first post collegiate job or you have been with the same company over a decade, you should continually look for ways to advance your career.
This is especially true if you feel that you are unappreciated, are curious about other professions, or simply want to increase your income. Everyone has different reasons for wanting a change, but the most important thing is that you move forward and make progress with your career goals.
1. Discover which career is right for you
Before you try to advance your career, you should determine if the career path you are currently on is right for you. Are you happy in the industry you work in now and just want to try another job in a different department? Talk with your supervisor to determine if that can be a viable option for you. After all, you should only follow career paths that you find satisfying. Curious about another industry and want to see how you would like it? Find a company that is willing to let you intern or job shadow one of your employees. That way you can still keep your job and discover which career is right for your skills and talents.
2. Leverage social media to get access to new jobs
The best ways you can advance your career in 2013 is to take advantage of social networking sites to help you in your job search. Networking online with the right contacts can open the door to new job offers. Join websites like LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter to find new opportunities that you may not have found through old-fashioned outlets like newspaper job ads or referrals. LinkedIn is especially useful since it focuses on developing only professional connections. Join their forums and participate regularly so that you can seem like an expert in your field. You can also intentionally request to be linked to influential people that can help advance your career.
3. Network with professionals in real life
While it is great to network with others online, you should never forget to network off-line also. You can go to local industry events that you find interesting and meet new people in that field. MeetUp.com is a website that allows you to join different groups that you're interested in and go to monthly meetings in your area. Usually the meetings are free, and you can leave with a significant amount of contacts and potential business relationships that can help propel your career.
4. Take initiative at your current job
Due to the economy, many companies are financially stressed and are trying to save money. If you have extra time in your schedule, ask your supervisor for extra projects or offer to lead discussions or meetings for your company. Your boss will appreciate you taking the initiative and asking for more responsibility, especially since it relieves some of the burden from their shoulders. When it is time for promotions, your boss will remember your positivity and ability to be a leader.
5. Take advantage of online learning
Another great suggestion is to take advantage of the different educational materials available for purchase online. There are countless PDFs, ebooks and much more information available online that can help you increase your knowledge about your career.
Finding a career you love is the holy grail for some people. You can significantly increase your odds by networking with others, improving your job skills by continuing to learn, and letting your supervisor know that you are ready to move forward and have more responsibility.
Ryan Foster is a finance manager and guest author at www.10tipsfor.com, a site with helpful guides and articles covering many topics.