Strategies on Moving Your Career to the Next Level in 2013

2012 is almost at an end and for most career persons they may feel they did not achieve the career growth they envisaged at the beginning of the year. Whether you are currently working, out of job or seeking a new job this time of the year is a time for stock taking and planning.

How Have You Fared in Terms of Your Career Aspirations?

Have you Experienced the Growth You Desire in Your Workplace?

What Do You Think Held You Back From Gaining That Promotion or Landing a Better Job?

These and more are likely questions to ponder as we warm up for yet another year of marathon racing career wise.

If you feel you have done little or nothing so far in your career and that this year you failed to make serious progress in your career growth here are a few steps to make sure you do better in 2013.

Determine Your 2013 Career Goals:

A football team starts a new season with an idea of what they hope to achieve; a seasonal goal. It could be anything from winning the league championship to securing a top four finish or even avoiding relegation. The team sets this goal based on its strengths and abilities at the time. A company also at the start of another financial year sets revenue goals for itself as well as other tangible goals such as certain percentage of cost reduction in their production, etc.

You, as an individual (jobseeker, worker, executive, salesman), are no different. Just as organisations set their own goals individuals should also set theirs. The world out there is becoming increasingly competitive and there is no mercy for persons who do not have a sense of direction of where they are headed.

In setting a career goal for yourself for 2013 you ought to consider your current position and set realistic goals that, given your current skills and talents, will be attainable. Set down in black and white what type of job you wish to secure if you have none. If you are already working and not happy with your current job determine the type of job you wish to secure.

When you have the definite job or career goal in mind it makes it easier for you to be less distracted and more focused on searching, identifying and going after opportunities that fall in line with your career goals.

Be Realistic in Goal Setting:

Many times in my work at Ngcareers I come across jobseekers and even workers who seek high paying, skillful jobs but do not have even one third of the skills and knowledge that is required. One way to help you keep your head on ground and be realistic is to get as much information as possible on the related requirements and knowledge needed to get the sort of job you are aiming at. Don’t just say you want to become a well paid telecom engineer in 2013 when you know next to nothing about what is required for telecom engineers. Getting all the necessary information on the skills, knowledge and experience for becoming a successful engineer will help you

– know where you are currently in terms of what is needed
– know what you need to invest (in time, money and effort) to reach an acceptable level where you can easily land your dream job
– know the right places, people and organisations to start meeting in order to set the ball rolling for your career goal

After Determining What is Needed What Next

When you find out the sacrifices you will need to make to get close to your career aspirations then you are in a better position to get started. You will be doing some or all of the following from the next moment to give yourself a brighter chance of getting to your career aspirations

Catch up on Skills and Knowledge required

Start to make a list of relevant people in your projected career space and start to create meaningful relationships. LinkedIn has made it more easier to meet managers, CEOs and business people that you will otherwise have not been able to meet. The way you craft your connection requests on LinkedIn matter. I will write a clear and practical guide on how to ensure your connection requests on LinkedIn get accepted. The key things are to ensure you create an exciting and compelling LinkedIn profile and secondly make sure you write a short, straight to the point connection request. These two things will guarantee that many of the people you wish to network with on LinkedIn will respond positively to your request

Create Meaningful Relationships and Provide Value: Some jobseekers can be so desperate as to become pests. One sure way to lose a chance to get help from your friends and associates is to appear desperate. It follows even in dating; when you appear desperate to get the beautiful girl she sees you more as a pest and liability and draws away. The key is confidence and eagerness to provide value. Provide value to all your friends and associates. Instead of pestering your LinkedIn connections with messages and harassing your twitter connections with tweets begging for jobs find out more ways to bring more value to their work and they will in turn begin to notice you as a somebody capable, someone that deserves help and not one who needs help.

Create Checkpoints

What is the point of a goal when there are no timelines to check and appraise your progress. For the football team that set a goal of winning the league championship they will likely review their position halfway into the season and ask themselves if they are still on course to meet their goals and if not find out why they may be falling short of meeting their goals.

You will also have to, like the Football team, set two or three checkpoints during the course of 2013 when you will review your progress and see if you are on course to achieving your career goals. The checkpoints will help you take drastic actions if you feel you are not doing enough to meet your goals.

Remember everyone wants to have a career they love, get all the perks that come with having a successful career but very few will go the extra mile to do what they need to do to make that career dream come through.

Now you know what to do in 2013 for your career aspirations. Go on, Do it!!

Paul is the Vice President/Co-founder of Ngcareers. You can Follow Him on Twitter Here

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