According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 157 million people in America are employed. Nearly 71% of these, about 107.8 million, are in the service sector. The country has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the world. But employment does not guarantee job satisfaction. For most people, stagnation is the biggest reason for dissatisfaction in a career.
Are you feeling stagnant in your career? You don’t have to accept that feeling. Instead, you can do something about it by taking a few active steps.
Here are five ideas:
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Take a Course to Broaden Your Skillset
As you’re working to grow your career and broaden your skillset, there are a few different types of courses that can help.
- Courses that will lead to a promotion: Taking a course is a great way to prepare yourself for the next step up. For most profit-seeking organizations, MBA degrees in marketing can get their employees a better position.
Since postgraduate business programs focus on developing leadership and communication skills, graduates can easily advance to marketing positions. The marketing world has also been further augmented by technology, adding to it new creative areas and job profiles.
- Courses that will get you a new job: Many people spend years working for one company before deciding it’s time for them (or their employer) to move on. For these professionals, taking an online course helps them fill gaps in their skill set with relevant skills employers want.
- Courses that will get you out of your comfort zone: If all else fails and no other options are available within your current field, take some steps outside of it. This can help reinvigorate passion within yourself while also introducing ideas from other industries or areas into yours. This may be just what gets those creative juices flowing again.
Become a Mentor
Mentoring is a great way to share your knowledge and experience with others. If you’re feeling stagnant in your career and need a fresh perspective, mentoring can help you learn new skills and build your network.
You can also use this opportunity to build your resume by sharing some of the responsibilities you’ve held in previous jobs. Also, consider that providing mentorship may help improve self-esteem, confidence, and even happiness.
Serve on an Outside Board
There are several reasons why it’s beneficial to serve on an outside board. First, it shows that you’re dedicated and have an interest in the community at large.
Second, it can help you network with others who have similar interests, which can lead to job opportunities or even friends you’ll be able to count on as colleagues down the line.
Finally, serving on a board gives you experience working with different people. This is a skill that will come in handy if or when you decide to start your own business.
If there is no direct tie between your profession and the organization that needs new members, don’t worry, you may still be able to serve. Many organizations offer leadership training for their volunteers so everyone has something unique to bring into their communities through service work.
Even if there isn’t much overlap between what they do professionally (or personally) and what they do as part of their service project(s), this experience still teaches valuable lessons about leadership, communication skills, and teamwork. These are all things that any professional should hone over time.
Take on a New Project or Job to Learn New Skill Set
Take on a new project or job that requires you to branch out into a new area or skill set. According to a Statista survey conducted last year, 51% of young professionals feel the need to learn new skills to perform new work functions.
It may seem counterintuitive to make yourself uncomfortable, but taking on something new can be an incredible way to grow professionally. Think about all the skills you’ve learned over time by doing things outside of your comfort zone. It could be launching a side business, starting a blog, applying for an advanced position at work, etc.
These things might feel scary at first, but they will help build confidence and strengthen your ability to learn quickly, which is an essential trait in the modern workplace.
Attend a Conference on Your Dime
Attending a conference on your dime is an excellent way to further your career. Why? Because it gives you access to new ideas, people, and opportunities. With so many conferences happening across the country every year, it’s important to make sure you choose one that is relevant to your current position and will help take your career in a positive direction.
When choosing which conference to attend, keep in mind the following factors:
- How far away is the conference?
- What topics will be addressed at this particular event?
- How can I apply what I learn at this event back into my daily life or workspace?
According to a survey by the University of Phoenix, almost 64% of adults feel that opportunities in their current company are limited. However, it may not be a problem for many as some value it as stability and comfort. But for many, it’s important to keep moving forward in their careers, and that means committing to grow professionally.
There are many ways you can do this. Although some of these strategies may seem intimidating at first glance, remember that taking risks can be very rewarding.
In addition, it’s important not only for yourself but also for your team and organization as well. If we want our organizations to succeed long term, each person must take responsibility for their professional development because no one else will do it for them.