Make everyday career management a practice.
Women are learning to play in the competitive dog-eat-dog world of professional workplaces in increasing numbers. They are rising fast, facing the odds and gaining positions of power, side by side with men. Today, you will hardly find any career paths that are exclusive to men. Besides, most women feel that they can ‘have it all,’ balance family and career.
This is not to say that the challenges have gone away, but these challenges have not stopped them from taking charge of their careers and making the most of the opportunities that come their way. Since this can be an exhausting process, from time to time what has not happened consistently is focus on career development. According to LinkedIn’s What Women Want @Work survey, Indian women cited lack of investment in professional development as the no. 1 challenge that affects their career. So what can you do about this? Here are some ideas:
Invest time in your career: Make everyday career management a practice. Invest time in nurturing your professional brand by learning new things every day and keeping up to date with industry trends. These days, we live in a highly connected and technology-driven world, so building your professional network of trusted connections is a critical career management skill.
Stay updated: Spend time getting to know more about your clients, partners, competitors and the industry you operate in. On an everyday basis, take some time out to read the news that is most relevant to you and your industry. You can save valuable time by utilising tools that efficiently aggregate the top articles being shared by your trusted connections and by professionals within the industries you care about, all in one place and across multiple sources. Follow specific industries, as well as select news sources like the Wall Street Journal to see which stories are shared the most by news source and industry.
Choose a mentor: According to the survey, lack of a mentor was the second biggest challenge that women said they face in their career. Don’t wait for your employer to give you guidance on your career path. Instead choose someone you can look up to. Study their career trajectory to understand the steps they took to be successful in their career.
Stay connected on-the-go: In today’s dynamic workplace, you might meet a lot of people everyday. In such a case, you are sure to make the perfect first impression if you are at your confident best. While you are on your way to a meeting, run a quick background check on the person you are about to meet.
Showcase your knowledge and expertise: In today’s evolving workplace, it is not enough if only your peers know how good and well-informed you are. If professionals outside your workplace know about your knowledge, it immediately increases your chances of being approached for a new opportunity. There are multiple platforms on which you can do this – lead a forum, publish an article, start a blog or share your thoughts about current affairs on Twitter.
In today’s highly connected world, being a power woman is not all that difficult. It’s all about giving your career a little bit of extra attention and striking the right balance between your personal and professional life. Be confident and always remember to put your best foot forward!
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