Advancing Your Career

For many employees, an important consideration for selecting a job is whether the career has room for advancement.

Each employee has a different idea on what job advancement means. It is important you come up with your own definition to decide whether or not your chosen job has adequate advancement in the areas you consider important.

For some employees, career advancement strictly relates to pay increases. Others view career advancement as a means to get better working conditions, such as more scheduling freedom or additional days off. Others view career advancement as an increase in work responsibilities. This includes being promoted to a higher position, often taking over managerial duties.

Some careers include advancement as one of the perks, but in most professions, you must earn your career advancement. When you are looking at jobs, consider what you can do to advance. In certain positions, career advancement is unfortunately limited because the only way to move through the corporate ranks is for someone above you to retire. Career advancement in certain industries has a high price, such as sacrificing your personal life.

More information about managing career advancement is provided below.

What is Career Advancement?

Career advancement refers to several different career promotions. Career advancement is often marked by an increase in wages and responsibilities. You may receive an additional job title when you advance in your career. Career advancement usually comes with additional perks, such as receiving more time off, better insurance plans or more freedom over your work schedule.

Limited careers offer additional training or education once you reach a certain level in the company. This includes paying for classes to help you advance in your chosen degree, in exchange for agreeing to work for the company for a set amount of years.

Once you understand what you are looking for in career advancement, consider whether your chosen job has what you are looking for. There have been multiple polls showing less than half of the companies in the United States provide career advancement. The best way to find out what the company provides for career advancement is to speak with the employees. Do not be afraid to ask how long they have been working their jobs, or how often they have seen other employees promoted.

Some careers simply have limited room for advancement or have multiple requirements which take years to complete before you advance. It is better to assess whether there is room for advancement before you take a job, as employees often have a difficult time leaving a job they have accepted. Even if they are unhappy with the job, it is still troublesome to leave.

How to Get Ahead at Work While Balancing Life Responsibilities

In the past, career advancement was much harder to achieve, no matter what profession you worked in or what position you held. Previously, employees were expected to work incredibly long hours and constantly accept any overtime offers just for the chance to possibly advance in their chosen career.

Today, career advancement still requires putting forth the effort, but it is not nearly as demanding. Employers put more of an emphasis on quality over quantity. It does not matter if you are constantly staying late and putting in extra hours if you end up producing lower quality work because you are too exhausted to properly focus on your job.

In fact, businesses often prioritize employees who complete goals without having to put in extra hours, since it sets more realistic standards for deadlines. It shows the employee is capable of delegating and responsibly managing his or her work time.

Advancing in your career means standing out from your peers. You must prove you offer something to the company nobody else provides. If you want to stand out from your peers, consider taking additional responsibilities.

Make sure you are requesting work you can handle. If you take too much at once to try and prove how valuable you are to the company, you risk becoming overwhelmed. This has the opposite effect, and management is more likely to pass you over for future promotions because they are afraid you are overwhelmed with the prospect of advancing.

You do not want to sacrifice your work friendships to advance. Do not think of your fellow employees as competition. When you advance in your career, you are typically given responsibilities where you must manage your former coworkers. If you are unpopular or your coworkers do not think they can trust you, management is likely to pass you over for an advancement. This happens even if you are technically the most qualified employee in every other area.

Advancing in an Entry-Level Job

Most employees start their careers in an entry-level position. Entry level jobs are surprisingly hard to advance in. This is because many employees are unhappy with entry level jobs because of the limited responsibilities. These employees make the mistake of acting like the job is beneath them. Even if you know you are more than qualified for an entry level position, do not let it diminish the importance of your job.

Companies want to promote someone who is dedicated to their job, whether or not it is challenging. Treating your job seriously shows you are invested and care about what you do, which greatly increases your odds of receiving a promotion.

It is important to keep in mind that entry-level positions are designed to ease employees into more advanced roles. Even if you are qualified for a higher position, employers may want you to start in an entry-level job so you get used to working with a team or following specific company procedure.

Easy Ways to Advance in Your Career

One of the easiest ways to advance your career is to speak with your employers. Many employees are passed over for promotions because they are too passive and expect the promotion to naturally happen.

You must show you are willing to work hard with the company. Managers appreciate employees who show initiative, since it means they are dedicated and interested enough in the job to want to advance in the first place.

Another way to advance in your career is to receive additional training and certification. This is especially important if your job does not normally present new responsibilities for you to take on. Let your employers know when you develop new skills or certification. This is an excellent way to signal you have talents better utilized in a higher ranked position in the company.