Happy November! November is National Career Development Month. Your career development process continues even after you choose a profession.
Now is the time to reflect on where you are in your career and think of ways to advance your professional success. Regardless of where you are on your journey, here are 8 things you can do now to better position yourself in the future.
1. Update Your Resume. Create a list of your accomplishments over the year and spend time highlighting them on your resume. We are in unprecedented times with high unemployment rates. Updating your resume is proactive. You want to be ready either way—if you are negatively impacted by the job market or come across a new opportunity.
2. Update your LinkedIn. If you do not have a LinkedIn profile, join today! In this virtual world, how you show up digitally matters even more. Statistically, LinkedIn is underutilized by young professionals and millennials. With over 700 million users, LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional networking site.
If you do have a LinkedIn, get active! Spend time this month sharing content, joining groups, and engaging with other people. Engagement leads to higher visibility and can translate into more connections (and possibly more clients for business owners).
3. Join a Professional Organization. Research and join international, state, or local organizations in your field. Being affiliated with organizations expands your professional network and gives you insight into the trends in your industry. Some professional organizations also have exclusive access to job opportunities and training opportunities.
4. Obtain a License or Certification. Licenses and certifications demonstrate that you have specialized knowledge or skill in your field. Credentials add credibility to who you are and what you can do. It also a great conversation starter to career progression conversations and show that you are ready for more responsibility
5. Take an Online Course. Maybe you are not ready to commit to a full certification, but you still want to progress. There are several online learning platforms (Udemy, Edx, LinkedIn Learning, etc.) available to help you grow your skillset. Most of the courses are self-paced and recognized by companies.
6. Find a New Podcast. Podcasts are a great passive way to learn information. The right podcast can inspire a new idea, keep you informed on a topic, and help you grow professionally by providing insight from experts in various fields.
7. Attend a Masterclass or Webinar. Whether it is free or paid, on-demand or live, masterclasses and webinars are classroom-like sessions where experts share their tips, advice, and answer your questions. Whether it is gaining confidence in your speaking, learning a new platform, improving your writing, or building your personal brand, there are numerous webinars out there to help you upskill (personally and professionally).
PLUG - I had the pleasure of presenting at the Secrets to Earning Your Worth Webinar (which is now released)! It is an on-demand webinar with expert advice on Resume Enhancements, Interviewing Techniques, Leveraging LinkedIn, Salary Negotiation Techniques, and Improving your Personal Brand.
8. Start that Business or Nonprofit. You are innovative and have been sitting on your idea long enough! This month is a great time to start. Being a founder will present new challenges and allow you to develop new leadership skills. If you are wondering where to start, check out this November Info Session for Starting a Nonprofit or this Business Consulting Firm on starting your business.
No one has more influence over your career than you. It is better to be proactive with your career planning than reactive. For example, if the position you want is not available right now, you should gain the skills you need for that role NOW instead of waiting. Just like animals store up food for the winter for later use, it is wise for you to build your skills now for future use. This is a brief list of things you can do now to level up during National Career Development Month!
Share the goals you have for this month, and if any of these recommendations resonate with you.
Marcell Jackson, Founder of Professionally Developed.