5 Tips to Get Ahead in Your Job

Waist up portrait modern business woman in the office with copy space

Most people seek out jobs with progression opportunities. Career advancement is an extremely common goal. However, the real work begins once you have the job. You  need to work to get ahead, to secure promotions and rise through the ranks. Getting ahead takes hard work, commitment, and initiative. There are several things that you can do to get ahead, so read on to find out more.

Educate Yourself 

Often the employees who have the most relevant training or qualifications are favored by employers and are more likely to be put forward for promotions. Employers are obliged to train you to do the job; however, they do not have to provide you with any additional training. If you want to get ahead, you need to take the initiative. Learning new skills, taking classes and gaining certifications can help to show your employers that you are serious about progression. You do have to pay for them, which is not always cheap, but it is an investment in yourself, your future. There are so many options out there from respected institutions; for example, you can undertake a program via Harvard University Online, who have courses to help in all areas of business like financial technology, management or analytics. 

Be Proactive

As well as performing all of the tasks in your job specification, you should be trying to do more. This isn’t to say that you have to work yourself to the bone and do everyone’s job for them. Ask your manager if there is anything else you can do, outline the time and capabilities you have available to them and any additional tasks they might give you. You could also do your best to keep up with industry news and trends, informing your colleagues of anything that might be relevant to their jobs or the business at large. This shows management that you are passionate about your job and willing to put the work in, cementing yourself as a good worker in their minds. You will be perceived as a problem solver, someone who is indispensable to the business.

Advocate for Yourself

In order to get ahead, you really need to be your own biggest fan, to advocate for yourself and your skills. Think back to why you were hired. What was it about you that impressed your bosses? You need to continue to display those skills. Once you have the job and you’ve settled in, it can be incredibly easy to find yourself in a rut, stuck in a work routine that doesn’t necessarily showcase your full skillset. Try to think of innovative ways to use your skills and knowledge to benefit the business. It will make more of an impression on your managers, and they are more likely to remember you and to think of you when the opportunity to be promoted arises. 

Communicate Well

You need to do your best to keep the lines of communication open between yourself and your bosses. You need to ensure that you are on the same page in terms of their expectations of you. Having these conversations helps to make sure that you are always reaching the goals that have been set for you. Most businesses do carry out performance reviews so that you have a better understanding of how you are getting on, but if yours doesn’t, then you can request one. As well as having conversations about your goals you should also be honest about your mistakes. If you try to cover up your mistakes, then you look both incompetent and dishonest. Instead, take ownership of them and learn from them. It shows your managers that you are responsible, willing to be held accountable and to learn from them. 

Presentation Matters

Your ability to do the job is obviously very important; however, the way you present yourself matters almost as much. You should always do your best to come across as a professional both in the way that you dress and how you conduct yourself. Although, professional can mean different things to different people, follow the lead of your colleagues. If your company has a more casual dress code, then you are not required to turn up in a suit every day. Make sure you are presenting yourself in a way that is appropriate for the environment that you are in. When it is obvious that professionalism matters to you, your bosses will notice. 

To Conclude

Nobody wants to be stuck in a job you don’t enjoy forever with no chance of advancement. However, you could be trapping yourself by not giving yourself the best chance of progression. The tips above can help you to make the best impression on your bosses and ensure that you are first in line should the chance for a promotion arise. Think about your goals. Have you been doing everything in your power to reach them? If your current job can’t provide you with the chances that you want, then it might be time for a change.