5 Skills to Learn for Successful Career Growth
Jumpstart your career growth with our 5 tips:
Career Growth Tips
To be successful — in any domain — requires more than just excelling in specific skills.
We all have to work on soft skills and train our mindsets, to become better people in general.
Not just career-wise.
Apart from knowing the technicalities of your job, you need to be able to work with other people—and common technologies—effectively.
This means that to achieve career growth, you need to grasp the basics of human psychology, know how to use popular digital tools, and develop even a few leadership skills.
It’s hard to put your finger on which specific skills would be generally applicable to any workplace.
However, there are a few skills that can help – no matter where you work. We’re talking about skills like productivity, digital literacy, time management, and organization.
Let’s look at 5 necessary Abilities for Workplace Growth:
1. Career Growth: Productivity
This might sound a little general but bear with us.
The key idea here is to learn how to spend your time doing something that is important to you. For example, some people feel productive if they finish all of their tasks before 5 pm. For other people, productivity means finding time to spend with family and friends.
Another important thing here is to be self-aware. Many workers aren’t happy with their career growth. No matter what your job is, you must have an end goal. It could be getting a promotion at your company. Or learning a related skill in order to grow and become a better employee and professional.
Always remember your purpose and work towards it continuously.
How can you improve your productivity?
- Find what is important to you. Knowing what you’re working towards will keep you motivated. But, to be effective, you need to evaluate two things. Whether the goal you’ve set is still relevant and whether or not you’re getting closer to it.
- Focus on your goal. Now that you’ve established your purpose, keep it in your mind at all times. Put more effort into actions that will help you accomplish it.
- Make time for you. Avoid burnout at all costs. Always try to keep a healthy balance between your career and leisure time. If you overdo either of them, the other will be gravely affected.
This is popular among best practices for career growth.
No matter your field of work, there’s a high chance that you have to deal with technology. Knowing this, it’s always a good idea to be familiar with the most commonly used tools—social media, digital marketing, analysis, or even basic coding languages.
Another thing you probably have to deal with is making presentations. Whether you like it or not, most office jobs are at least 50% made up of meetings where you have to present your findings in the best way possible. And in blue-collar environments, presentations help you get your message across more efficiently.
What can you do about it?
- Choose a cool slide deck. There are plenty of free PowerPoint templates online. Find one that fits the atmosphere of your workplace and meeting. Structure your information—try not to put too much information on your slides. Keep them simple and easy to read. You will make it easier for everyone else to get your main point.
- Prepare your speech. Sure, improvisation is good sometimes. But, on such occasions, it’s always better to be prepared and not to be caught off-guard.
- Engage with your audience. Try, as much as possible, to keep the attention of the people you’re presenting to. You could ask the team questions or make them vote on something. If they actively participate, it’s more likely that they will remember what you presented.
This is the kind of skill that will help you on a personal level, not just in your career.
Being able to communicate effectively includes a couple of sub-skills, such as being able to speak clearly, or actively listen, to observe other people, and even to write properly.
This skill is incredibly important to successful career growth.
It’s highly likely that you have to work in a team. Therefore, to be able to work with other people, you need to know how to understand what other people are saying.
But, maybe, more importantly, you need to make sure that other people understand you.
If you haven’t had a career growth conversation with your leader, upgrade your communication skills.
Then ask your manager or another leader at your company to carve out some time.
How can you improve this?
- Structure your speech. Before you say something, try to structure the information in your head. Try to only say what’s essential—if you add too many details, your point will be lost.
- Actively listen. Make sure that, when somebody is talking to you, you really understand what they mean. Refrain from making assumptions and, if needed, ask questions.
- Observe. Try to pay attention to the people around you. Do you have some teammates that are struggling? Maybe it would be a good idea to lend a hand. It’s the little actions that make you an amazing person to work with.
Related article: Ideas for employee engagement
Organization and Time Management
Being able to manage your skills and time effectively is a major skill that everyone needs to master.
It can help you reduce your stress levels as well as be more punctual in general.
Luckily, you can get a lot of help with this.
There are plenty of time management apps and tools online that you can use to enhance your career at your company.
But it’s important to keep your physical work materials organized as well, not only digital ones.
How can you improve this?
- Prioritized to-do lists. At the beginning of each day, make a list of what you have to do. After you’re done, note down which ones are more important and which ones can wait. This way, you will be aware of the workload ahead of you.
- Clean up your desk. Having a messy desk or work area can stress you out all on its own. Seeing clutter around will make you feel like you’re drowning in your work and that there’s no way out.
- Find your time management tool. Organize your tasks in an app that you’re comfortable with. By doing this, you can set deadlines and get notifications as they approach.
Innovation and Adaptation
If everything stayed the same, how would we learn and grow? Continuously learning new things fuel career growth.
Try to see challenges as learning and development opportunities. Approach them with curiosity! If you manage to adapt to difficult situations, not only you will be more reliable, but your stress levels will go down.
Another thing you can do is to question your methods of doing things. Is there a better way to finish this task? Of course, if something works perfectly, it doesn’t need to be changed. However, more often than not, there will be an easier way to finish your work.
Team work fuels innovation!
How can you improve this?
- Keep an open mind. It’s not always easy to think outside of the box. However, try to always be open to suggestions and opportunities. Even if someone’s idea doesn’t seem good, try to think of ways to improve it. Don’t just dismiss it from the start.
- Work smarter, not harder. Just because things have been done a certain way for a while, it doesn’t mean that the process is perfect. If you find a way to make a process automatic or easier for you in any way—without damaging the results—don’t be afraid to change things.
- Accept challenges. This is how you grow and become a more experienced person. So run towards challenges instead of away from them. Not only will you learn things, but your self-confidence will sky-rocket.
Will This Fuel Career Growth and Get You That Promotion?
It depends. But it will definitely make you a better employee and person.
Lack of career growth is a common cause mentioned by job hoppers.
Every workplace is different, with its own approach to career advancement. However, this kind of professional development skillset will help you out in any situation. Both professionally and personally.
Being able to be organized and manage your time efficiently, as well as feeling productive, will help you grow as a person.
And so will being able to adapt to any kind of situation!
If you focus on becoming better and developing your personal skills, the promotion you’re dreaming about might come sooner than you think.
Dan Martin has extensive experience in building teams and coaching others to foster innovation and solve real-time problems. He has hands-on experience in digital marketing since 2007. Dan also enjoys photography and travelling.