4 Ways to Get Ahead in Your Career

A lot of people grow up and find themselves in a typical 9 to 5 job in an office. You start off at the bottom of the ladder, doing a simple admin-type job. It’s probably the most common job out there, mainly because it’s accessible by many. You don’t need a great deal of experience or training to fit this role, and every business requires these services. 


While it can be somewhat financially and emotionally rewarding for a while, this type of job grows stale very fast. Especially if you feel overqualified for it. As such, you want to try and advance your career as a business professional. You want to climb up from the bottom of the ladder and make your way to the top. 


If you’re hoping for some secret tricks or quick fixes, then I’m sorry to disappoint! Working your way up the career ladder requires dedication and patience. Unless you’re incredibly fortunate and know someone with influence, then you’ll have to put in hard work every day. Still, there are ways to make your advancement more streamlined. Follow these tips to start climbing the ladder as a business professional: 


1. Ask for a promotion.

You’ve been doing the same job for many years, and it’s getting tiring. More to the point, you’ve put in a long shift and dedicated a lot to the company you work for. However, you remain in the same position that you started in – with perhaps a raise or two along the way. 


Put simply, you’re not progressing at all. Something has to change, and you are the one that can act as a catalyst. All you have to do is speak to your boss and ask for a promotion. If you hear of a new role opening up, then tell them you want it. Yes, it’s scary, but how else will your boss know that you’re interested in advancing your career and being considered for this role? 


In many scenarios, you’ll get the job as companies prefer to hire from within. Even if you don’t, your bosses will look at you in a new light as you show ambition. When another role opens up, they may come to you before anyone else and reward your patience. 


2. Quit your job.

It sounds counterproductive to quit your job if you want to advance your career. Still, if you keep getting shunned for promotions, or you feel like there’s physically nowhere left for you to go within a company, then quit. 


Quitting lets you open up your options and pursue new jobs. You may find a better role at a rival company that pays way better and allows you to move up in your career. You’d be stupid to pass an opportunity like that! 


Likewise, you may decide to become a freelancer and go at it alone. Here, you essentially become a business yourself. Use all the skills and contacts you’ve developed over the years to help generate clients and make a lot of money. You lack the security of a 9 to 5 job, but there’s no glass ceiling for you as a freelancer. Your career can progress as rapidly as you like, meaning you become more successful than if you stayed at your old job. 


The bottom line is that, if you have gone as far as you can go in your current job, then it might be time for a drastic change to stop your career from stagnating. 


3. Undergo additional training to gain new qualifications.

Regardless of whether you choose to stay with the same company or quit your job, you will benefit from additional training. Training allows you to gain new qualifications and advance your education. You will grow your knowledge base and become capable of handling new jobs and tasks. Remember those promotions you wanted? With further training, you may suddenly be more qualified for these roles. Now, your bosses might seriously consider you and promote you!


The key is to seek out training that will be beneficial to your development as a business professional. Consider what skills or roles are valuable to organizations. Business analysis is a huge concept that sweeping the corporate world right now. Companies need people who can help them make sense of data and help with decisions. So, becoming a business analyst by undergoing extra training can be a smart idea as you’re capable of taking up a vital role. The same goes for becoming a financial advisor or a bookkeeping expert. You now possess skills and knowledge that businesses find incredibly valuable. 


In essence, training adds more strings to your bow. Instead of only being qualified to tackle basic tasks, you can handle more advanced and specific things. This instantly makes you a more valuable employee for any organization. So, new opportunities are created to start climbing the career ladder. 


4. Build and use a network.

Networking is essential for anyone that wants to advance their carer. If you don’t know anyone, then you’re always going to struggle. Most people know someone that can help them get a better job. Whether this is directly through the person hiring them, or indirectly via a recommendation, it always helps. 


As someone that’s been working for many years, you should have some contacts within your line of work. If you don’t, then head out to networking events or use social media to network with other business professionals. Grow a web of contacts that you can call upon when the time is right. Every person you know can offer a potential opportunity. 


Think back to the second point about quitting your job. If you wanted to find a new job, then having a network of business contacts is so beneficial. You can ask around for any potential job openings, or get loads of quality references for your resume. Either way, it helps you find a better job a lot faster than if you were on your own. 


Is there anything wrong with a typical 9 to 5 admin job in an office? Not really, no. If you enjoy it, then that’s perfectly fine. But, if you’ve been in the same role for years, and want to progress, then you have to take action. The tips outlined above will help you break free from your shackles and advance your career as a business professional. 


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