How to Take Control of your Career Development
If you’ve been waiting on an advancement in your career development without taking any steps towards it, you might find you’ll be waiting for a long time.
Career management is a joint effort between an employee and their supervisor. It’s up to the employee to notify their supervisor that they’re looking to advance their career, rather than expecting them to know right off the bat – supervisors aren’t mind readers.
The one mistake that many individuals make when it comes to their career development is waiting for someone else, usually their supervisor, to help them advance their career.
Everyone is accountable for their own career path, even though it’s important for an effective supervisor to play an active role in their employees’ career development, it’s the employee that needs to speak about what they want and ask their supervisor which steps to take to achieve their goals.
There are several ways to take control of your career development:
Know your goals
If you don’t know what you want out of your career, you might not be in the right one.
However, if you’re sure that you want to make advancements, research into your current career path and find out who is above you in that pathway.
Once you do this, you can start a conversation with your supervisor about developing yourself to reach that goal.
But remember: career development isn’t just about getting to the next pay bracket, it’s about what you, as an individual in your field, want to do for the future of the company.
Start the conversation
No one else can have a career development conversation with your supervisor but you.
Address your goals with your supervisor, ask for regular feedback on your performance, and remember to schedule time to speak with them whenever you’re having troubles or doubts.
If you don’t make that step to speak to your supervisor about possible career development, then it isn’t likely that they’ll be coming to you.
Take action with your feedback
Once you’ve received feedback from a supervisor, take everything that they’ve said under consideration and then start making changes to your work patterns and behaviours.
For example, if your supervisor doesn’t see many leadership qualities in your work, then start showing them some leadership qualities – next time you’re in a team that needs a leader, offer yourself instead of waiting for someone else to take the job.
Speak in public, help your co-workers with their more extensive tasks, and take on extra duties.
Take every opportunity
Along with our note above about taking on extra duties at work, talk to your supervisor or manger about any available opportunities that can help highlight your skills.
If a project comes up that you think you’d be perfect for, it could be a great experience for you.
Taking on these new opportunities can show initiative, while also giving you the opportunity to prove yourself.
In addition to work opportunities, ask for extra training – this can really help when it comes to career development.