In spite of the obstacles that you may face in the work force, there are various and effective ways to take control of your career. You have to remind yourself about the main goal at hand: Breaking into the field that you are interested in. It is imperative that you evaluate your goals and the expected rate at which you hope to achieve them. These insightful ways to take control of your career will put you on the right track.
1. Keep Your Eyes Open
One of the first ways to take control of your career is by both being firm in your resolve to get your coveted position but also remembering to be open to playing the field. I've never understood the stigma surrounding having more than one plan as it gives you the chance to weigh your options. For instance, I've always known that I wanted to become a writer, editor and an English teacher; being an English major gives me the chance to explore these diverse but often connected careers.
2. Goal Setter, Go-Getter
The best way to plan how you want to move forward is by doing exactly that. Make your aspirations more concrete by having them written down in ink; this may not sound like a big step but trust me when I say that it helps. You want your boss to notice the effort that you put into your work? Write down the tactics you'll need you use in order to accomplish this, i.e. asking to take on more responsibility.
3. Input Equals Output
Getting input, whether it's on a project that you're pretty confident about (giving you the perfect excuse to show off your skills) or unsure of, is another great way to take action when it comes to your career. Constructive criticism will help you pinpoint what you need to work on and highlights the skills you must keep.
4. Time Management
I'm a believer in the mindset that it is better to do something efficiently and get the job done as opposed to rushing through a project for the sake of the finish line. The trouble with this is that deadlines do exist in the world outside of my head (unfortunately). The key to both completing the task and doing an amazing job is time management; set a schedule for yourself to tackle different aspects of the project and give yourself little rewards for hitting each benchmark.
Organizing your work goes hand in hand with time management. After planning what needs to be done and giving yourself a time limit to achieve said results, you need to manage your space. It will be difficult to think clearly if all you are greeted by is a cluttered desk with no idea of where to begin.
6. Skills, Skills, Skills
It has been said that one of the most glanced at parts of your résumé is the section that lists all of your skills. Because of this factor, it may seem obvious that the more efficient you become at particular tasks, the greater your résumé looks. Don't let your past experiences go to waste; put what you've learned on display.
Lastly, it is always important to reflect on both successes and losses. You have to be humble enough to understand why something didn't work out in order to create foolproof ways to succeed the next time around. Think of it as being a part of a trial and error process.
When it comes to realizing your potential, being determined will take you a long way. What are some ways that you use to steer your career in the right direction? Have you found them to be effective?