6 Key Ways to Foster Career Opportunities for Your Future Aspirations

In life, using what you have wisely is key.

Whether it be time, or using what little resources you have today, how you use it is critical.

Investing for the future, to invest the now for the path ahead is something we all consider invaluable.

 

The same can be said for your career. But how do you go about using your time and resources to gain an edge, hone your skills? Opportunities come only to those that are ready.

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERABuilding your career, and doing it fast is imperative today. If millennials want to remain relevant, wanted, we need to carve out our way forward. Rather than just hopping jobs when career opportunities open, find out where you perfect role, and how to gain entrance to that dream position.

Now, more than ever, you have to differentiate yourself by focusing on your unique skill sets and take charge of learning. Learning on the job just won’t hack it; employers know more than us of the vast amount of information available and look upon those that take no initiative as lazy and irrelevant.

Like many job requirements, you need experience. Below are starter tips in gaining experience.

 

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1. Internships when you are Studying

For graduates, this is a must, as a first step in differentiating yourself. This step is focused primarily on millennials undertaking tertiary education, and the main goal here is not to make money but to gain valuable training, to help differentiate yourself from others.

Key Tip: Focus on different industries or aim to have a focus on a set industry. Well rounded vs. Specialised.

Networking: Seek to gain life long connections for the future. Not only can they be a source of referrals, but the insight you can gain from mentors and experienced professionals is great for career growth.

The choice is yours.

 

2. Interviews as a Learning Experience

Informational interviews

Many companies jointly hold these informational fairs, where you can connect and ask for an informational interview.

Key Tip: Ask specific questions related to particular roles and future career paths.

Example: For a financial analyst role, what future career prospects open up?

By going to an informational interview, you will be considered a potential future candidate in their job pool. So make sure to bring a resume and CV, and try and aim for both online and offline interviews if available.

 

Spray and Pray

Many of us tend to spam and focus on going to a limited amount of interviews in our interest area or ideal job role.

Key Tip: Go to as many interviews as possible. It’s a great way to learn about a company and industry, rather than just relying on online blogs and articles.

You might be surprised, where a role or industry that never struck you as being ideal may be just that, in what you discover in going to that interview. Career opportunities can arise from the most unlikeliest of places.

 

3. Volunteer to Learn and make a Difference

Volunteer to your strengths, and aim to make a difference.

Aim to volunteer in ideally what you are passionate and believe in, and mesh it with your skills or interest area. You will find that making a difference for those that need it will push the boundaries in what you can do, but how you utilise your skills to do so.

It looks great on your resume, and you can use the experience to gain transferable skills to tout on your CV.

 

4. Take learning to a New Level

The web is a vast place, and there is something to be learnt, regardless of what you studied or what your current job entails.

 

Webinars sponsored by Companies

Companies do this to secure emails on their company mail list, but they do contain valuable information, written by their industry experts.

Key Tip: Incorporate the various strategies they have, relevant to your industry, and formulate plans and take direction in how you want to begin or advance your career goals.

Webinars can take the form of a speaker, commonly using visual aids to help push across what they are saying.

 

Complement your Skills by Learning Online

Learn online or attend a course, to further your skill sets. Tafe and online courses are often seen as inferior to tertiary level courses. The main difference I found was that Tafe courses had a more hands-on approach, where they actualised learning in everyday excel work or in how to use MYOB.

Online courses are made to accommodate learning for those not willing to travel to study, but still provide informative courses comparable to University courses. These are ways in which to complement or start learning new skill sets, where you should be gaining qualifications to complement your current ones.

 

5. Dig into your Network to Learn

Ask friends for help. Seek friends that work where you are aiming for or try and make connections and get referrals using your networks.

Key Tip: Find skillsets that will be useful for you to learn about, and make appointments, and make a suitable payment if needed. Professionals value their time, so be punctual, to the point, and take notes so as not to ask the same questions as before.

 

6. The Stalking Technique

Another tactic that is very useful is following professionals you would wish to emulate. The successful leaders in your field are not there by accident; they have very particular ways in which they approach learning, and in staying ahead.

Key Tip: Follow them on social media, and seeing what they do offline will highlight what you may need to change in how you study, manage time and approach your career goals.

Bonus key Tip: For invaluable insight, gain mentors, where the value of obtaining one is immense. They can pinpoint what you need to do to furthering your goals, and they know what skill sets are valuable and will be relevant in the future. The incredible insight they can share with you can shave off decades in your learning and skyrocket your career path.

 

What do you think? How do you take responsibility for your own learning?

 

Please share your advice and insight in the comments below.

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