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Tags: Career Guidance, Career Development, blog

Many people shy away from conversations regarding their career development, but why? Being inquisitive and showing that you want to invest in yourself are great traits to have. From a manager's perspective, you’re more likely to bring your best self to work as you strive to get ahead. 

 No matter what level of seniority your role is, here are five useful tips for developing your career and being your own best advocate! 

Have a 5-year plan

A popular interview question is "Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?", and with good reason, this is a loaded question that allows interviewers to judge how motivated you are. Knowing where you want to be five years from now means you can start working on your end goal now. Your plan is likely to change along the way, but having a rough guideline enables you to seek out opportunities to help get you there. 

Self-awareness

Complete an audit of your skills to identify the areas you are good at and can push yourself in and the areas you need to work on. It’s often difficult to identify your flaws, so be sure to ask for feedback, take it on board, and tackle it head-on - setting yourself small personal goals to complete along the way.

Raise your hand

Taking on additional projects allows you to gain experience in new areas and showcase your skills to those senior to you. Going the extra mile will require effort short-term, but your future self will thank you when it opens up new opportunities, internally or externally. But remember, while it is great to take on additional work, be aware of how much you can physically manage alongside excelling in your current role.

Hold career conversations

Don't wait for a performance review to discuss your career development. Start an open dialogue with your manager about your development in between performance reviews. Holding conversations a few months before or months after a review, shows you are proactive rather than reactive. It also gives managers time to come to a decision naturally before being offered an ultimatum. 

Network

Whether it’s nurturing connections in your current role or externally over time, it’s certainly worth doing so. Having people who know your skillset and are willing to advocate for you, and potentially match you with the next opportunity is a great way to progress in your career. But remember, before asking anything of somebody, make sure you’ve cultivated a relationship with them by staying in touch or offering to help them too.

Ultimately, career development is a slow and steady process with zigs and zags along the way. Make sure to embrace the opportunities at each stage to develop new skills, meet new people, and gain additional experience. We hope that the tips above help you craft a plan to reach your dream workplace or position. Good luck!

Are you looking to progress your career? Our specialist recruitment consultants at Search have access to a wide range of career opportunities and can support you to reach your professional goals. Contact us today.