Don't Get Too Comfortable
Always aim for that next promotion.
It is very common for corporate millennials to get complacent and comfortable once they’ve landed a job in their field of study. Your career is a journey and your daily actions set the trajectory for what that journey will look like.
As a young professional looking to rise and excel in your workplace, here are a few keys you can use to increase the value you offer to your employer, become a self-starter and rise to the next level of leadership. Often times, employers are looking for the next person in line - the perfect candidate for the promotion or for that raise. It is your responsibility and yours alone, to ensure your employer has your name in the ranks.
The following keys will help you develop yourself as a young professional, enhance your value-offering, and put you at the front line for that promotion:
1. Be self-aware: What are your strengths and weaknesses, passions, and dislikes? Knowing yourself will help you bank on your strengths, perfect them, and excel at a greater level. All leaders are not perfect, but they are self-aware and know where their strengths lie so they can continuously better themselves in those areas and seek opportunities that align with those strengths and passions.
2. Be a constant learner & study the greats: The pursuit of knowledge is a life journey that does not end after you graduate from college. Learn from other great leaders who came before you. What are their habits? What differentiates them from the next person? What can you learn from their story?
3. Find a Mentor and a Sponsor: Mentors to help advise you on the right paths and decisions for your career, and Sponsors who will "name-drop" you when opportunities arise in your workplace or industry. Having your own personal board of directors will help you throughout your career journey.
4. Invest in yourself: Attend conferences, workshops, professional development courses and the likes. Strive to be a better person than you were yesterday. An investment in yourself is one that no one can take away, and as you build your value-offering, investing in yourself tells others how much you believe in YOU. Don't expect others to invest in you if you do not invest in yourself.
5. Do Not be afraid to take a step of faith into the unknown: Apply for the position within your organization that maybe you think you are not qualified for. Leaders see this boldness and desire for growth and will not discount you. Show your supervisors and corporate leaders that you are interested in areas of advancement, or even in taking on more responsibility.
6. Prove yourself: Hard work never goes unnoticed. Going above and beyond for even the smallest tasks assigned to you sets you apart. If a manager can trust you with small responsibilities and you do them extremely well, you build the trust for them to trust you with greater responsibility.
7. Network, network, network: Great individuals know the power of building a strong network. Build strong connections both inside and outside your organization. Invite your supervisor or division manager for coffee, reach out to a local leader in your community that you admire, get involved in community organizations or causes of interest to you. Never underestimate the value of a strong network.
Always remember that learning does not end when college does. The average CEO reads a book a week whereas the average employee reads a book a month! This says a lot. Constantly work to better yourself in all areas of your life and do not get comfortable or complacent with where you are. Seek growth, pursue knowledge and watch yourself thrive.