We’ve all heard the saying, “To climb the ladder of success, you must start at the first rung”. Taking this into account you may find that, to land the job of your dreams, more often than not, you’ll need to start from the bottom...
1. Take on an entry level job – Don’t be put off from taking on a job at entry level. Although many people feel as though they may be ‘above’ certain jobs, everyone needs to start from somewhere, and you may even find that you will progress a lot faster.
2. Make yourself known – Making sure the decision makers know who you are is vital if you’re hoping to get recognised in a company. Ensure you speak up in meetings. Demonstrate your value by contributing useful and interesting ideas.
3. Build relationships with people at all levels – If there is a job opening in the finance department, it’s difficult to guarantee you’ll be considered if no one in those departments has any idea who you are. Instead, on your next visit to accounting or your next call to IT, identify who’s who in order to build relationships across your company.
4. Don’t be afraid to take on additional responsibilities – It doesn’t hurt to help out, provided you have the time. Taking on more than you can handle, just to show you can, is not a great idea. It will distract you from the job at hand. If you feel as though there are other areas in which your skills will come in useful, bring this up with your manager. Your enthusiasm will be appreciated
5. Apply to relevant job openings – Your desire to work your way up a company will be apparent when applying for different positions. Ensure that you are suitably qualified for each job you apply for, so as not to appear too unrealistic. Going directly from office assistant to department director in a large company is unrealistic, but applying to a project coordinator position when you are a skilled administrative assistant is a logical progression.
6. Develop your skills – Think about how you propose to achieve your career goals. Depending on your goal, this may involve things such as getting more education, mentoring, taking a certification examination or better acquainting yourself with your employers. Identify the things you can do to improve your career standing, then create and implement a step by step plan for accomplishing these.
7. Network Network Network! – Networking is a vital part of any job if you’re hoping to move up in your position. Whether it is social networking such as LinkedIn, or attending industry seminars and shows. As your profile and reputation grows, so do your chances of climbing that ladder!