If you are feeling unchallenged, bored, dissatisfied or stuck at your current position at work, you’re not the only one. Many young professionals begin their careers in positions with hopes to climb the ranks, but sometimes that just doesn’t happen. Most members of the Jaycees know things are not just handed to you – you have to work for advancement in the workplace. Besides coming to work and doing your job, what else can you do to promote your career development in your current position? Here are four ways that can help you build a stronger self-brand at work:
- Know what is possible. In some jobs, there just isn’t room for growth. Period. Sometimes the best kind of career development doesn’t involve a promotion; sometimes it’s knowing that you won’t advance. Why? Because career development isn’t just about that — it’s about how you handle adversity and overcome perceived obstacles. Learn all you can about your job/industry/etc. and be the best at it so you are prepared when an opportunity arises.
- Get involved outside of the office. Have a charity or cause you are extra passionate about? Your bosses are likely to support your volunteer or fundraising efforts AND it can be a way to enhance your workplace reputation.
- Make sure you’re great at more than just your work. Are you a good communicator? Work well with others? Super organized? Your boss (and their boss) may value more than just the ability to produce quality work. If you have your eyes set on a promotion or a raise, focus on maintaining your high quality of work as well as improving your soft skills, which are coincidentally often skills identified with great leaders.
- Be committed. Might there be better opportunities out there? Or the possibility to get your foot in the door elsewhere? Maybe. Does that mean you should jump ship for the chance of greener pastures? Definitely not. We’ve all heard the phrase “with no risk comes no reward.” Make goals at work, commit to them and evaluate where you stand at the end. If you aren’t making the progress you anticipated, the career development you want may not be an option in your current position.
Don’t ever let yourself feel stuck in your current position. It’s up to you to create opportunity – whether by investing in your existing job or by finding a job with a more promising future. Have you had success in moving up the ladder? Visit the Jaycees’ Facebook and Twitter pages to share your experiences with us. If you are not a member of the United States Junior Chamber and are interested in getting involved in an organization outside of work, visit our website to find a young professionals chapter near you today.
United States Junior Chamber
You can look at nearly all professional fields – from politics to health care to major innovators – and find a successful member of the Jaycees at the forefront. This also rings true for professionals in the entertainment field. Many people who have brought joy and amusement into the lives and homes of millions of people across the world are also entrepreneurs. But did you know that they have also been a part of the same organization that you are involved in today?
Considering the endless roster of members, the United States Junior Chamber can obviously be considered a useful tool for any professional – famous or not. Are you interested in joining the ranks of other celebrated Jaycee members? Visit our website for more information on a local chapter near you.
As children we dream about growing up to be firefighters, astronauts, veterinarians and pro athletes. Once we are settling into our careers, there is usually one job that we all still dream of: being the boss. If you have aspirations to own a business of your own one day, it’s important to have a well-thought-out plan. Perhaps the most important key to your success is selling a product that is in demand and will sell. According to Forbes Magazine, here are the five booming job industries in which entrepreneurs are seeing good fortune:
- Internet and Data Services – This is probably an obvious choice as innovation in technology continues to emerge daily. Whether you’re an avid user or an occasional emailer, our lives are lives are becoming more and more dependent on online services. As this continues to grow, so will the need of tech-educated individuals.
- Computer Systems and Software Services – Just think about daily tasks at your current job. How many times do you use a new program? Big data are usually a big part of our day-to-day activities in the workplace. Where there is innovation, there is a need for software to use or benefit from that breakthrough.
- Accounting Services – New business = more opportunity for those in the accounting and audit services field. We’re seeing a constant change in rules and regulations that increases the need for more experienced accountants with an entrepreneurial drive.
- Business Consulting – Do you already have experience starting your own business? Business consulting might be a smart next move for you. Having knowledge in creating business strategies, planning marketing campaigns and budgets is a tool that people are willing to pay high dollar for when they are beginning a business of their own.
- Home Health Care – According to the National Association for Home Care and Hospice, more than 12 million people receive home health care each year? The number will only continue to climb as baby boomers age and retire. Since replacements will be sought to fill these positions, the home health industry will see a spike in need.
Did you know that nearly 13 percent of Americans were starting or running new businesses in 2012? That’s the highest rate of entrepreneurship in the United States since 1999. If you’ve thought about going into business for yourself, now is the time to get started. Have advice for other Jaycees that would like to get started as an entrepreneur? Visit our Facebook or Twitter to share your thoughts.
How many texts, emails and social media posts do you respond to each day? Now think about how much time you spend in face-to-face conversation in the workplace. Are you falling out of touch with just how necessary in-person communication is in business? The United States Junior Chamber believes that e-communication should be supplemental to real talk, not the other way around. Why exactly? Read on to see why person-to-person contact is still the reigning channel of communication:
You can’t see body language via email. A UCLA study indicated that up to 93 percent of all communication is nonverbal. This includes eye contact, body language and posture. Many times in business, forgoing in-person meetings with clients can lead to misdirection and ultimately one or more parties being unsatisfied. Have you ever told someone what they wanted to hear to get them off your back? This is much easier to avoid face-to-face because of the nonverbal cues that are absent from e-based communication.
Lackluster results in online networking efforts. Can you network primarily online? Sure! Many people do in the form of the social media platform LinkedIn. Do you think that networking online is maximizing your efforts? Probably not. It’s difficult to create, nourish and grow connections without actually meeting these people in the flesh from time to time. This is why the Jaycees often sponsor networking events or community service activities. Get out from behind your tablet, laptops and smartphones and interact with your peers and other industry professionals to sharpen your communication skills.
You’re not Bosley – people need to know that you’re real. Imagine this: you cross paths with a co-worker/LinkedIn connection/business affiliate. Whether they know who you are and you don’t know their face (or vice versa), it’s embarrassing for everyone involved. We don’t expect you to remember every single name and face that you come across in a lifetime, but remember that the people you meet through work or industry-related events are not bridges you ever want to burn. Make sure that when people do learn your face there is a positive association.
What do you think? Are you pro face-to-face communication, or do you believe that technology is paving the way for strictly e-based communication? Visit our Facebook or Twitter pages to share your thoughts. Interested in joining your local Jaycee chapter? Find out how to get started here.