If you’re currently in a management position, you likely spend much of your days on tasks such as training employees, recruiting new team members, helping workers to develop, planning out projects and more. However, if you want to move past your current position, it’s important to have a focus on furthering your own career, too.
During your work life, there should always be new goals you’re reaching for, like promotions, more flexibility or responsibilities and the like. This helps you not only to achieve all your lifestyle goals but also to stay engaged, interested and challenged on the job. Read on for some tips you can follow to further your management career over the coming year and beyond.
Know What You Want to Achieve
For starters, it’s hard to get top results in your career if you don’t know what it is you’re striving for anyway. As such, to avoid getting stuck in a dead-end career or working in the wrong field because you don’t know what you want to do, take the time to get clear on your goals.
Make sure you have short-term and long-term aspirations. These goals could be anything from earning a certain amount of money each year or leading a team of a certain size through to becoming a manager at a Fortune 500 firm or something else. No matter where it is you want to go, by understanding your desired results, you can focus on strategies to achieve them and avoid wasting time, energy and money on things that will take you in the opposite direction.
Once you know what you want to get out of your career, put together a plan of attack to make it happen. Think about things you can do today, in six months, a year, five years and 10 years to get where you want to be. Having a detailed plan to keep looking at over time will help you stay on track and focused.
Keep Learning New Things and Meeting New People
Next, keep in mind that if you want to be a top achiever, you have to do top things. While certainly working hard and being committed, passionate, persistent and resilient will go a long way to helping you get the results you want, you also have to keep improving yourself. The people who make it to the top in their work continually develop themselves. They learn new things and build up new skills.
There is a wide variety of ways you can grow. If you need to learn more about being a leader and running a business, consider enrolling in online graduate programs such as MBAs focused on these areas. Many students in post-graduate programs also find that the contacts made during these studies are invaluable, which is another plus.
If this kind of structured university study doesn’t appeal, note that there are other ways to fill gaps in your knowledge. For example, you can read books, newsletters, blogs, magazines and the like; listen to audiobooks and podcasts; attend conferences, trade shows and other industry events; get a mentor; join business associations and clubs; and attend short courses, workshops and speaker sessions.
To be a respected manager leading a team, you have to be someone who goes after opportunities and shows hiring managers that you have plenty of initiative. As a result, to further your career in management, you must continually look for ways to be proactive.
For instance, network regularly, so you get the chance to meet key people in your field. You never know where these connections can lead. Make sure you do both online (via social media sites) and in-person networking for comprehensive results. Be open to sharing your opinions and other content online and via speaking at events, too as this helps to build your personal brand and develop your reputation as an expert in the field. The more people see you as being “in the know,” the more likely it is that you’ll get approached for leadership positions.
Don’t be afraid to ask for what you want in your career. If you’re keen to be promoted to a higher management position, ask your superiors what you need to do to get there. Often, people don’t put forward their intentions because they’re worried about seeming pushy, but most supervisors are looking for workers who are keen to advance. As well, be proactive by submitting your resume to firms you’d like to work at, even if they’re not currently hiring; you never know when positions may open up.