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8 Steps to Quickly Reach the Top of Your Career Ladder

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Last Updated: Oct 7, 2020

Although most managers and CEOs have been in the business for many years to get where they are, many people are impatient to achieve their dream promotion and leap to the top of the career pathway that they have planned for themselves. However, if you are looking to bypass years of hard graft to progress quickly within your industry, you will need to know some of the most effective steps that you can take.

1. Make Your Intentions Known

It can be tempting to keep your managerial ambitions a secret, especially in the midst of office rivalries or intense competition. However, although many people choose to keep their goals under wraps, making your intentions known can help to propel your career forward quickly. One reason why you might be missing out on promotion before you reach middle age is that your boss simply does not know that you are interested in taking up more responsibilities. Therefore, you should speak to your manager as soon as possible about the opportunities within your company and the positions that you want to aim for in the future.

One of the best opportunities that you have to speak to your manager is through a one-on-one meeting, which most companies provide annually. This will allow you to hold a two-way conversation where you can find out what is preventing you from being promoted. You will also be able to set mutually agreeable targets which you can aim toward, and which will open doors to the next step on your career ladder.

2. Take an Extra Qualification

One of the most vibrant debates in the world of careers is whether experience or qualifications will most improve your job prospects. While the debate remains intense, why not work at gaining both? By taking an extra qualification, you will be able to gain the specialist knowledge that you need in order to take on additional responsibilities within your firm. This can even allow you to apply for roles that you may not even have considered previously.

Not only this, but there are many executive qualifications that are tailored specifically toward those who are working toward leadership roles across all industries. For instance, nurses in the healthcare industry looking to advance their careers might consider the online DNP leadership programs that can help them to excel by giving them the business and management knowledge that they need on top of their existing medical knowledge. Not only this, but you will be able to take this course from home, allowing you to work up to a managerial position within your healthcare practice while attaining the required qualification.

3. Get Managerial Experience

On the back of your new qualification, it is important that you are able to acquire experience simultaneously. However, not just any experience will allow you to become a great leader in your company. Rather than looking for work experience opportunities that are better suited to young graduates, you should look for opportunities that are specially tailored to those who are looking to move up the career ladder.

For instance, many firms offer shadowing opportunities or job exchanges. These types of experiences will give you a first-hand insight into the managerial side of your industry, allowing you to see whether the next steps of your career ladder are right for you. Not every way to get experience is so formal, though, and you should also get experience by offering to take on leadership roles within your firm. This could be anything from working on new projects to leading out-of-work groups and societies.

4. Speak to a Career Advisor

You do not have to rely on only yourself and your own initiative when you are looking for progression opportunities. Instead, you should seek to speak to a career advisor who can give you tips that are individual to you and your personal situation. They will even be able to help you to hone your resume towards specific jobs, and can even allow you to find jobs that will suit you and your credentials.

5. Look at Other Jobs and Companies

Although you might always have dreamed about progressing within the company that you currently work for from the moment that you passed the interview, this is not always to be. If you do not believe that there are ample career opportunities for you in your firm, you should start to look at other jobs and companies before your role begins to grow stagnant.

When you are looking for other jobs in different companies, you may be able to apply for a role with bigger responsibilities without having to work your way up. To find these, you should look at industry-specific job boards or even contact companies that you would love to work for directly. You may also want to look for companies with fast-track management schemes or other training ventures.

6. Meet the Job Requirements

Meeting the job requirements that are listed may sound simple, and yet many people fail to do this and end up disappointed that they have not been accepted for a job that they were under-qualified for. Therefore, before you try to make steps up your career ladder, you should research the requirements of the types of jobs that you want, and work on building your CV to meet these.

You should also only apply for jobs that you are able to meet the requirements of. This will prevent you from wasting your time by applying for positions that you will not get.

7. Continue to Network

In the current job market today, networking is often more important than your resume. Not only can networking allow you to come into contact with new job offers and hear of new opportunities, but it can also allow you to collect and retain advice about progressing in your field.

8. Make Sacrifices

If you want to get to the top of your industry, you need to make sure that you are completely devoted to your job and put in the hard work and extra hours required. This may mean making certain sacrifices by skimping on family time, days off, and other important occasions. However, you should make sure that this is balanced and that you are able to maintain your mental health, as only by doing this will you be able to work at the top of your game in the future.

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