A new year is symbolic of a fresh start or for establishing healthy habits. Many people use this time as an opportunity to reflect on their careers and understand where they are and where they would like to be. Doing this under our current economic climate can be intimidating. However, even if you feel discouraged, there’s never a wrong time to advance your career trajectory. Here are five ways to grow your career in 2021.
Establish your career goals
If you want to grow your career in 2021, the first thing you must do is establish your goals. If you want to improve your career prospects or make yourself a more valuable employee, you have to set goals to get you where you want to be. Are you looking to add a new skill? Do you want to grow into your leadership role? Regardless of what you want to achieve, you must set SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound).
Once you have your goals set, you should seek mentorship. Find a mentor that you can trust, one that can offer feedback and support to help grow your career. Reach out to them and ask them if they are willing to guide you, offer advice, and be honest with you. One of the keys to a successful mentorship is it has to be a mutual relationship. In other words, this person has to want to mentor you. Otherwise, it won’t be an effective mentorship relationship.
If you are looking for advice on being a more coachable employee, we recently wrote a blog on that!
Hone new skills or strengthen current ones
Another great way to reach these goals is to hone new skills or sharpen skills you already have. Identify if there are any skill sets, tools, or techniques to help you achieve your career goals this year. Once you understand what these skills are, you can work on improving them. Take online courses, watch how-to videos on YouTube, or attend webinars. Actively working on skills that will help you take your career to the next level will make you marketable, improve your career prospects, and make you a more valuable employee.
Here are three must-have skills to help you grow your career in 2021.
Regularly track your progress
After you know what you want to accomplish and how you will do it, set milestones; write these milestones down and regularly track your progress toward completing them. This will help you stay on track and remain focused on these career goals throughout the year. Tracking your progress is part of setting SMART goals because your goals should be attainable. If they are achievable, you can track your progress, and you can check-in with yourself and your mentor.
Celebrate your wins
Many people forget to celebrate their wins, even if they are small. When you are tracking your progress, and you complete one of these milestones, take a moment to celebrate! Pat yourself on the back and reflect on all of your hard work! Share these wins with your mentor, too, as they should be equally invested in your success. Celebrating your wins will make this journey more rewarding, and you will appreciate your growth.