Year after year, resolutions lists are chock-full of career goals, but what prevents those professional aspirations from being fulfilled? While intrinsic motivation plays a major role in career advancement, a solid plan is just as important. Whether you’re seeking a promotion at your current company or desire an entirely new role, there are several key tactics that will help make 2018 a year of job transformation.
Leverage Your Current Position
While it might be easy to sulk about your current job, it’s worth viewing it with a fresh set of eyes, especially if you’re planning on surviving the lengthy job hunting process. Think of ways to tailor your current job description to the position you ultimately want. Make a list of things you dislike about your role and clear ways to improve them somehow. It’s very likely that you have a lot more control over your current situation than you’re giving yourself credit for. Making some simple changes may help make your job bearable or even potentially likable.
Try taking it a step further by expanding your responsibilities.Ask for a stretch assignment—a role that is completely different from what you do on a daily basis within your department or outside of it. It forces you to learn new skills, sharpen old ones, and gain exposure in another line of the business. It’s a way to flex a new skill set, and it’s an opportunity for your boss and higher-ups to see what else you have to bring to the table. It’s also a nice addition to your résumé.
While you’re working to maintain your job performance, remember that presentation is everything.It’s not enough to simply be the smartest person in the room.If you have a seat at table, speak up, speak out, and really have something to say, whether it’s based on your skill set, your personal experience, or just plain ole research. And dress beyond the part. It not only empowers you, it gets you noticed every time.
Share Your Expertise
Broadcast your professional know-how via content creation.Plenty of people are smart, but not that many take the time to share their knowledge through a vehicle like blogging,When an employer can see for themselves that you’ve thought through the relevant issues and have an insightful take, they’ll be far more likely to choose you over a competitor who may feel riskier because they haven’t subjected their views to public vetting.
Get Serious About Social Media
But blogging isn’t the only online tool that can help boost your profile and capture the attention of hiring managers. It’s important to think of your social media accounts as a professional calling card, rather than just a personal hobby. If you’re trying to land a job, think about how your social media can advance that quest. Instead of a random assortment of things from your life—pictures of your pets, or vacations, or breakfast—consider curating a steady stream of targeted content about your field. That shows you’re serious and conversant in key trends—and will help you stand out.
Craft a Forward-Looking Résumé and LinkedIn Profile
It’s also a good time to rethink your résumé and LinkedIn profile.Remember that your résumé and LinkedIn profile should not be historical, but instead, forward-looking. Focus on the aspects of your experience that will prepare you for your target job—not your last job. You left your last job and you don’t want it back!