Have you been yearning for success in your stagnating career?
Don’t worry. You are not alone.
Success means different things to different people.
To some, success means earning a lot of money.
To others it may mean getting promoted to the highest possible designation.
I, however, like to think of it as being happy and finding meaning in what you do. And not just finding meaning, but also continuing to enjoy your work until the day you retire. Personally, I think that is where true success lies.
How then can we nurture our careers and our life? What are the keys to success in life? Here are a few simple yet effective tips on how we can keep growing personally and professionally until the day we retire and hopefully even after that!
1. Challenge Yourself
The first and most important thing that you must keep in mind is that taking on new challenges automatically makes us feel more productive. We apply ourselves more and as a result, we begin to feel more accomplished.
Don’t get me wrong — I don’t mean that you should overburden yourself with limitless tasks. I simply mean that you should try to take on more challenges whenever the opportunity presents itself.
For instance, you can participate in any events being organized at your workplace. You can take on extra responsibilities or you can even help out a struggling colleague. As time progresses, you will begin to feel more and more satisfied with your job.
There is another upside to this. Taking on additional responsibilities and challenges will be perceived by the authorities as taking initiative. This will only reflect positively on you as an employee. And who knows, maybe you will find that there is a reward coming your way.
2. Maintain a Thirst for Learning
As a strong believer in education, it is my personal experience that a thirst for new knowledge and curiosity for new experiences takes us a long way in our personal and professional lives.
Man, as a social animal, is naturally inclined toward being productive. It is the environment that either thwarts or nurtures this inclination. Surround yourself with people and places that are conducive to learning and growing.
Participate in seminars and workshops at work, attend workshops organized by other businesses or institutes, and read up on topics that interest you. You could even enroll in online classes (you can learn pretty much anything online these days!) if there is a course or field that you have been wanting to explore. Seize the day and go for it!
3. Get Noticed
Everyone says that you have to be a valuable resource. But what do they really mean? The answer is simple: Be someone who is irreplaceable. Excel in your work to the extent that you employer begins to dread the day you want to resign.
The most important factor for any business is profit. Become a part of the system that directly relates to business profits. Work toward becoming a significant part of the team without whom the money would never come in.
A friend of mine (let’s call him Bob) was initially hired as a sales guy. His job was restricted to roping in potential clients and making huge sales deals. He got so good at bringing in the big bucks that within a few months he was promoted to the position of a Business Development Manager.
After a year of working in sales, Bob’s boss noticed that his communication skills were excellent and so he was moved to tech support. After working as tech support for two months, his boss realized that the company’s revenues seemed to be dropping significantly because Bob was no longer working sales.
He was immediately removed from tech support and put back into sales! So, in spite of there being at least 50 other employees on the sales team, Bob became indispensable to the company. So, take a leaf out of Bob’s book. Become an indispensable employee.
4. Stay Out of the Politics
Every workplace, be it a school, a hospital or a business, has its own set of politics. Wherever there are people, there will always be politics — especially when there is a definite hierarchy.
Unfortunately, politics have a way of sucking people in, and before they know it, they are bang, splat in the middle of it.
There is no simpler way to say this—stay out of the politics. The moment you hear someone bring up anything to do with another employee, choose to stay out of the conversation. Even talking about other employees with your friends is best avoided as it can have some serious repercussions.
The only situation in which you can be involved in the politics is if you are the boss. And by boss I mean there is no higher authority than you. But let’s face it, if you were the boss, you wouldn’t be reading this article now, would you?
5. Friends Close & Competition Closer
People often underestimate the power of amicable relations. Our natural tendency is to feel threatened by anyone who poses any real competition. But the truth is we have a lot to gain from embracing that competition.
For one, healthy competition makes us perform better as individuals, simply because we have an innate need to stand out. Secondly, instead of viewing the other employee as a rival, making him/her your ally will work in your favor.
You will learn a lot of new tricks and techniques from him/her which, in turn, will help you grow and become better at your job. The other person should be doing the same thing! This give-and-take will not only help you grow as individuals, but also benefit your company.
6. Embrace a Possible Career Change
Sometimes we are unfortunate enough to lose our passion for our existing career choice. For whatever reason, our heart may not be in it anymore. If this is the case — if you find yourself wanting out of your job — it may be worth looking into the core of your dissatisfaction.
If you have always been unhappy with your job, if you “settled” for that career to begin with, or if you find that your interests have simply shifted, don’t completely shoot down the idea of a career change. It is not as daunting as you think.
The truth is, with career schools flourishing in the United States today, it has become very easy to acquire training in any field. All you have to do is muster up the courage to quit your old career and look toward a new one.
Enjoy your work, always keep room in your life for growth, strive for excellence and success will come about as a byproduct.
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