Six Ways To Accelerate Your Professional Growth
Professional growth looks different for everyone. Some people hope to land a new job, while others want to advance within their current company. Some professionals want to take on new projects or responsibilities, while others want to bolster their skillsets or complete a degree.
Whatever you have in mind for your career, you can take the lead in your professional growth in six important ways. Rashan Dixon, a senior business systems analyst at Microsoft, says developing the right professional skills now can help you gain footing as you take your career to the next level next year.
In this issue of Promotional Consultant Today, we share Dixon’s tips for kickstarting your professional growth.
1. Connect with a group or mentor. One of the best ways to accelerate your professional growth is to cultivate relationships with like-minded professionals. When you deliberately grow your network, you can connect with a variety of smart people who can provide you with advice and recommendations at different stages of your career, says Dixon. The support of people around you plays a critical role in your success, so don’t be afraid to reach out.
2. Study successful people. You do not necessarily need to know someone personally to learn from them. You can glean all kinds of helpful nuggets and inspiring wisdom by reading their published works. Reflect on the leaders, athletes, or celebrities who inspire you. Whether they run a blog or have published books, set a reading goal for yourself and dig in, suggests Dixon.
3. Talk to your boss about your aspirations. With many businesses in flux amid the pandemic, you can look for ways to carve out new opportunities for yourself. Dixon recommends preparing your materials and scheduling a conversation with your boss. If you want a promotion or a new assignment, ask for it. If your superiors determine you are not quite ready for a promotion, commit to checking in regularly to ensure your progress does not go unnoticed.
4. Get active. An unconventional way to grow professionally is to get active—and preferably outdoors. Your brain needs activity to function properly, says Dixon, which means you should engage in different kinds of activities. If you can’t get outside for a hike or a bike ride, try something new indoors, whether you do some yoga or participate in an online fitness class. When you recharge your body, you can often learn to see things differently.
5. Know when to step away. To achieve your professional goals, it’s important that you give yourself time to rest and decompress. It’s not healthy to stay plugged in all the time. When you are off work, truly step away. And likewise, when you are on the job, be fully present.
6. Participate in a virtual conference. Attending an online trade show or event can be a great way to accelerate your professional growth. Those who take time to attend are often the most dedicated in their careers, notes Dixon. Look for ways to connect with other attendees. You never know who you can assist and who can help you along your journey.
To grow professionally, you must be intentional about it. Start by surrounding yourself with successful people and learning from them. Be sure to ask for what you want, whether you hope to work on a new project or you want a promotion. It also helps to stay engaged in different ways and connect with other people via online events. When you pursue professional growth, you will often revitalize your career and boost your overall happiness.
Compiled by Audrey Sellers
Source: Rashan Dixon is a senior business systems analyst at Microsoft, an entrepreneur, and a writer for various business publications.