People make different career choices and based on desire and educational records, choose from options like IT, healthcare, retail, education and so on. Few have the guts and caliber to carve a niche as an entrepreneur. However, even when you are in a regular job, having entrepreneur like qualities can prove to be helpful. Gone are those days when you could sit secure after scoring high marks in your university exams and grabbing a high paying job, thinking the life will be smooth thereafter! The truth is career growth is no longer that simple and the so called rat race is getting tougher and more complex with time.
It is time you start thinking of a logical and well laid out plan to develop and mould your career, much like entrepreneurs do with their ventures. As it is, the way successful job holders shine in their fields and successful entrepreneurs take their ventures to new heights is not very different. Below listed are the ways to treat your career like a business and outshine the competitors.
1. Stop being complacent
This is the first thing you need to do if shaping career properly is what you want and also want to develop an entrepreneur like zeal. Just because you are drawing a good salary in a job it is not the career destination. Stagnancy in a career is not a good sign and complacency can induce it. That does not necessarily mean you should change jobs frequently, but keep an eye for better prospects and ways to improve your skills.
2. Outshine others
Think of it this way. In any sector, including FMCG, there are a lot of players. However, the leading and popular brands offer something to customers that others cannot and so they get the maximum number of buyers. Maybe their products have specific USPs. Similarly, you have to develop additional skills and offer something unique to your employer that the peers cannot. This can be done in many ways. Putting in extra effort and exceeding targets can impress the employer. Focusing on aspects like punctuality, honouring professional etiquette like a pro does help in the long run.
3. Develop additional skills
You got a master’s degree in Computer application or did a web development course from a top tier institute which eventually helped you get a dream job. However, you cannot count on your existing qualifications, diplomas forever! With time, technologies and courses also change and junior colleagues in the company may actually be better qualified than you. You can always improve your qualification and skills. Nowadays, various online and distance learning courses are available and lots of working professionals opt for such courses. This way you can enhance your skill set which can help you grow within the company and look for better jobs with ease too.
4. Adapt to the changes
This is what a lot of entrepreneurs have done to stay in the race and emerge victorious after strife. When you had joined a plum job five years back, the sector was a booming one. However, with time demand for jobs in that sector may diminish. This happens in various realms of technology in particular. Intelligent and pragmatic professionals adapt to the changing trends in their niche. Based on your qualifications, penchant and work experience, changing sectors may be logical at times.
5. Grow your network
This is very useful when you want to expand career growth options. Networking with relevant people in your niche and related sector is very important. This is applicable to several industries. Thanks to the growth of social media and web, professional networking as become easier than ever before. Platforms like Elance and LinkedIn in particular are being used by millions of professionals to bolster their career growth. You never know how and when people in your professional network can prove to be useful for your career prospects. It is not only about job openings, but tips from veteran professionals can help you grow in your existing job. You should become a member of groups comprising of industry leaders and successful professionals in those sites.
6. Look out for pitfalls and risks
Along with opportunities, it is necessary to keep an eye open for risk factors in career. This is what big companies do and those who do not pay attention to changing trends in industry bite the dust! You may take the example of MNCs like Nokia and Blackberry in this context. If your company is going through downsizing, or market analysts apprehend the jobs in your sector will lose their importance, do not wait till the worse happens! Successful entrepreneurs never cling to a sinking ship and same is true about successful professionals.
7. Think out of the box
Utilizing the grey cells in your head at work can prove to be beneficial for your career growth in the long run. While you have pre assigned set of responsibilities as per designation in your company, you may sometimes think of coming up with ideas to create a positive impression on management and employer. The scopes can vary based on your sector and role in the company. However, innovative inputs and efforts from employees are generally rewarded.
8. Update your CV
Yes, it is required even when you are happy in your existing job and think you are managing career related aspects quite well. Make a schedule for modifying your CV and get it polished by experts, if required. It is the first layer of communication for prospective employers looking for candidates. You may have noticed how various brands tweak and alter their logos and catch lines with time!
Where it all leads to
There is no preset formula to manage your career in the way a successful entrepreneurs handle their ventures. The aforesaid tips will be of help to you. However, based on your specific situations, you may figure out even more ways to manage career like an ace entrepreneur. Keep in mind that a majority of successful business owners devised new ways of touching success rather than sticking to tried and tested norms!