Let’s face it, we all want to get ahead. For some, career advancement is a ladder, but for many, it’s a winding trail. With the help of a career coach from Boston-based startup Ace-up, finding a clear path can be easier.
Whether you’ve got your eyes on a promotion, or you’re considering what's next, keep these tips in mind:
Make sure you know what you want.
Everyone talks about getting ahead at their job, but you need to find out what that means for you. Does it mean taking over your boss’s position or transitioning to a different focus in the workplace? With a career coach, taking personality tests and goal setting can help create a vision that ensures you are moving in a direction that motivates you and makes you happy.
Speaking up is a simple tip that many of us forget when it comes to advancing at work. You may think your words and actions are as clear as day, but often they can go unnoticed. No one will know you are ready for more responsibility, until you tell them.
Remember that people aren’t mind readers. Be direct and tell your supervisor or boss how you are looking to grow and take on more in the company. Not sure what to say? Ace-up’s coaches are well versed in communication and leadership, and can help you get your points across.
Seek out opportunities to grow
When it comes to moving your career forward, what you do after hours may be as important as what you do during work hours. You learn on the job every day, but picking up a new skill outside the office can help add value to your role and make you an even bigger asset to the company.
Work on the technical side of things? Sharpen up your communication skills to help work with clients. Managing accounts in an industrial company? Pick up some coding skills outside of work that can add value to both the customer and internal conversations.
Embrace your performance reviews
While performance reviews are typically met with dread and fear, embrace them as a time to share what you’ve learned, and how you can grow.
Start by doing work ahead of time. Bring examples from projects that you shined in, and help guide the conversation rather than going along for the ride.
Hoping to get a raise out of the review? Consider polishing your resume with a career coach. Add projects and skills you’ve perfected over the year. Bringing in a concrete example of growth to show your boss can make all the difference.
Do you daydream about executive jobs that feel out of reach? Find someone who does exactly that and take them out for coffee. Understanding someone else’s career journey can shed light on yours and illuminate action steps.
Think both up and out
“Climbing the corporate ladder” doesn’t mean what it used to. Many of us will switch companies and even careers throughout our lifetime. Advancement might not always be within the company you currently work for. It doesn’t hurt to consider outside options. Exploring outside of your current employer can help you figure out if growth within your company is possible.
DON’T: Get comfortable
You might love what you do and where you do it, but remember to continue challenging yourself. As you grow and learn, it's expected that you take on new roles and more responsibility. Push yourself to learn every day, and work with a coach to create goals and milestones.
Growth in the workplace doesn’t happen overnight, but it also doesn’t need to overwhelm you. By creating a deliberate plan with one of Ace-up’s career coaches, you can find a path to growth in the workplace.