Five tips to take your career to the next level in 2024
If 2024 is the year where you get yourself into gear and do everything you can to take your career to the next level – whether it be getting a promotion, getting a new job or completely changing your career, you’re going to have to do some work to get yourself to that point.
While we know how important holidays and breaks are to relax and reset, if you do at least some of the prep work over your break and early in the new year when things are quiet, progressing your career is going to take way less effort, especially when things get busy at work and the thought of updating your resume or portfolio once the work day is over feels like all too much.
So, what things do you need to do to get your career moving in the new year? Keep reading, we’ll tell you what’s what.
Take a beat and reflect
This is probably the most important part of setting yourself up for career progression. If you don’t reflect, you won’t know where you want to go next.
So whether you’re on the couch, stuffed to the brim with Christmas leftovers and watching the Boxing Day test or lazing about in the sun by the pool/on the beach, grab a notebook or your phone, and jot down some thoughts about the last 12 months. Ask yourself some questions, including, but not limited to:
- What did I achieve?
- What did I struggle with?
- What areas do I want to improve?
- Did my job make me feel good (in general – we all have bad days!) or was it harmful to my mental health and wellbeing?
- Do I want something different from my place of work?
- Do I want to keep working in my area of speciality or do I want to completely change my career?
- Where do I want to be in 1, 2, 5, 10 years time?
The answers to these questions will help you shape the next step of the process.
Formulate a career plan with specific goals
Now you have an idea of where you want to go, now you need a plan of how you’re going to progress your career to get there. This is where it’s actually a really good idea to speak with a recruiter – they’re not just there to find you a job! They can give you direction and share how other people have achieved a similar career path to what you want.
Break your overarching career goals into smaller, achievable objectives to make them less daunting and overwhelming. It’ll feel that you’re actually moving towards something as you tick things off, rather than just looking at one gigantic goal and feeling like you’re not getting anywhere.
Write your career plan down and make sure to refer back to it throughout the year. It’ll help keep you focused and on track to achieve your career goals.
It always seems like a massive job to update your resume and while it’s time consuming, it’s a worthwhile exercise, especially if you haven’t done it in a year or so (A little tip from us – update your resume once a year with any new roles and key achievements and it’ll be way less effort to update when you do want to apply for jobs!). And the good thing is that you can copy and paste parts of your CV over to your LinkedIn profile, so it’s two birds, one stone. Winner winner, chicken dinner.
If you’re still running with a Word doc resume, consider upgrading your resume with a Canva resume template. They have lots of free templates that you can easily customise to help your resume stand out from the pack.
Finally, don’t forget to update your portfolio with any new work – or if you don’t have one, maybe it’s time to build one? Once the domain of graphic designers and copywriters, we’re getting more and more requests for candidates outside of these areas to have a portfolio, particularly social media candidates. If you need some tips putting one together, check out our article here – while it talks about social media portfolios, the principles are universal.
Once you’ve got all of these documents up to date, applying for jobs and liaising with recruiters becomes an absolute breeze. Just attach and send.
Keep on top of industry news and trends
While some people are really on the ball when it comes to staying on top of what’s happening in their industry, others aren’t – which is completely understandable. But the secret about this is that it’s pretty easy to do, plus it can benefit you in so many ways.
Subscribe to emails and follow LinkedIn pages of some of the peak industry bodies and news outlets for your industry. They’ll provide you with the latest news and trends, which can help you make decisions about your career. Think along the lines of whether an agency has won or lost a big client and what that means for their team structure or how to best use the latest tech on everyone’s radar.
Industry trends will also tell you what skills and tech are in demand from companies, so if you’ve been thinking about what to upskill in, make sure to follow the demand.
Work those networks
Our final suggestion is to get on top of your networking game – both on LinkedIn and in-person.
Follow or connect with hiring managers and senior management at companies you’re interested in joining or with people who are in a career position that you want to be in and make sure to engage with their content – you’ll pop up on their radar that way and can hopefully start a conversation.
Finally, do some Googling to find industry bodies, networking groups and conferences and events that you can attend throughout this year. As the saying goes, “it’s who you know, not what you know”, and you never know who you’ll meet and how they’ll be able to help your career further down the track. But you need to put yourself in the position to meet people in the first place.
Ready and raring to take your career to the next step in 2024? Start thinking and planning and when you know what you want (or even if you’re not too sure yet), reach out to our team today at email@example.com. They’re here to support you with your career, no matter where you are on the journey.