Getting Started Professional Development

5 Ways to Jumpstart Your Career in the New Year

Written by Peter Jones

It’s a new year. This is the time when everybody takes stock of where they are in their life and career, which means a shockingly high percentage of American workers will decide to look for a new job this month. But…maybe we don’t need to be so hasty.

It could be that your job is not the problem, there are just a few more things you could be doing to further your progress in your career. Try these five things before making any drastic changes. Who knows, you might realize you’re happier than you thought right where you are.

1. Have coffee with your boss

Rather than wait for an annual appraisal, find time to grab a quick and casual cup of coffee with your manager or supervisor, or even the big boss—if appropriate—from time to time. You’ll express your keenness to develop and succeed, and get a better sense of what you could be doing to improve and grow. Plus you’ll be on the radar as someone sharp and hungry to move up the ladder, which no doubt will be remembered come review time.

2. Stay in the family

Most companies prefer to promote from within. So why not keep an eye on positions up the ladder, or even in different departments, that might be suitable for you? If you’re not feeling challenged or rewarded enough, you can always approach your manager or HR rep about possibilities for moving within the company to a more mutually beneficial position.

3. Ask about training

Most companies have programs for training their employees in new skills and software. If your current job isn’t giving you enough room to develop, why not ask your manager or supervisor if there are any training opportunities they could consider you for? It’s a win-win situation for you both. They get a better trained, more qualified employee; you get free education that will serve you throughout your whole career.

4. Get mentored

Don’t just suck up to your boss. Find someone in the company whom you admire and ask if they might mentor you. They’ll probably be flattered, and you’ll learn valuable things that can help you grow professionally, or even give you a boost up to the next rung of the ladder.

5. Remain positive

Success begets success. If you want more recognition for the good work you are doing, consider noticing the good work of your co-workers and congratulating them on a job well done. At very least, you’ll build a positive, success-inducing work environment. At best, they will return the favor. Everybody wins.

About the author

Peter Jones