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Five Ways to Get Ahead in Your Career

advanceWe are living in constantly-changing world and are often looking for ways to grow in our personal and professional lives. As a business development manager for Towson University Continuing Education and Professional Studies (TUCEPS), I have many interactions with corporate clients and their employees. Through these conversations, I have found many are looking for ways to reach that “next” level in their careers.

Here are five tips that will hopefully help you reach the “next” level in your professional life.

  1. Learn Something New

    One of the top ways to position yourself for advancement is to stay relevant by learning what’s new in your field or a field that you want to transition into.

    There are many ways to acquire new skills, whether you prefer online training modules, YouTube educational videos, continuing education with new courses, or books.

    It’s also important to read up on industry news daily. You will be more aware of events and trends that can impact your current and future roles.

  2. Plan Differently

    Instead of feeling overwhelmed, or complaining that you don’t have enough time to accomplish your goals, realize you can always make more time. Sit down and determine what tasks are important to you and what are trivial. Get rid of the trivial tasks by delegating, automating, or outsourcing them. (Business Insider)

    Technology can offer us the flexibility to take a course when it’s convenient for us. Online learning is growing rapidly. Towson University Continuing Education and Professional Studies offers a range of online courses in business, IT, and the medical field.

  3. Be Able to Change and Adapt

    Be prepared for your job situation to change constantly. I know people who were marketing majors in college and who now have a completely different career. Even if you’re certain of your career path, you could find yourself with a new manager and need to adapt to his or her leadership style on short notice. Or, if you own a company, you might find your business model changes over time based on demand and on how your customers are using your products and services.

    You can best position yourself for these changes by understanding your core strengths and gaining skills that can be used across various business functions and roles. Being able to roll with the punches will be key to your long-term success. (The Muse)

  4. Take Time to Plan

    Think of your career plan as a war strategy – it takes consideration, determination and execution in order to go well. Spend time to think of your short-term (2–5 years) and long-term (5–10 years) goals and how you will achieve them.

    Once you’ve got your short- and long-term goals on paper and have figured out how you’ll achieve them, start facilitating the conversations and meetings needed to achieve them. This might be a meeting with your manager to discuss what you want to achieve in your current role, or where you want to see yourself in the next 1-2 years and how they may be able to help you get there. This is a great way to build rapport with your manager; they’re sure to take notice of your ambition and keenness. (lifehack.org)

    You can start by evaluating your personal skills by asking yourself some questions. Are you current on industry standards? Do you have relevant certifications for your field? What education component is missing from your Resume? Are you marketable?

  5. Networking is Necessary

    A great way to make advancement is meeting with the right people. Networking appears in many forms. Join industry organizations. For example, if you are in marketing, American Association of Marketing (AMA) might be of interest to you. Volunteer for a non-profit organization in your field. Beef up your professional social media interactions, with sites such as LinkedIn. These are all excellent ways to learn about new opportunities, compare yourself to peers for self-evaluation, and determine what you are missing.

    I’ve connected with many clients through networking and have built successful relationships from those interactions. This allows me to position education solutions to help organizations develop their employees and employees to develop themselves for better opportunities.

If you are interested in advancing your career, please contact me about continuing education opportunities and professional development strategies available at Towson University Continuing Education and Professional Studies.

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