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The 7 Career Moves You Need to Make in 2024

by Erika Robertson
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It can be frustrating to feel like you’re stuck in your career. But being stuck isn’t the end. You can take charge and make the changes to bring your career to new heights. This is an ideal time to do it, especially as 2024 begins and fresh starts arrive. Welcome new and exciting career opportunities with open arms as you invest in 2024.

Need some guidance? Here are 7 career moves to include in 2024 that will help you propel your career forward.

woman working on her career | vkstudio via Canva.com
Photo credit: vkstudio via Canva.com

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Set Clear Career Goals

Think about your short-term and long-term goals. Figure out the steps to achieve them. Do you want to advance your current role? Explore a new industry? Or maybe you’re looking to master a particular skill? Specificity is key.

Consider the SMART criteria. Your goals should be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound. Break down larger objectives into manageable tasks. Share these goals with a trusted mentor or friend, or even jot them down in a dedicated career journal.

Take Professional Skills Training Courses

To stay ahead in your career, continuous learning is important. To do this, start by identifying areas where you can improve your expertise. Then, invest in professional skills training courses.

Learning online is easier than ever. It also has several benefits. The biggest benefit is its flexibility. Busy schedule? No problem! Take your time―learn when and where you can.

Here are a few resources and their benefits:

  • LinkedIn Learning: LinkedIn Learning integrates seamlessly with your LinkedIn profile, offering a vast array of expert-led courses across professional domains.
  • Coursera: Coursera is a platform in which you can take courses from top institutions. There’s a wide range of courses and certificates to choose from.
  • Skillshare: Skillshare’s is a community-driven platform that emphasizes creativity and entrepreneurship. Enjoy project-based learning and collaboration among peers.

You can choose courses that align with your current goals. These courses help to expand your skill set. But don’t be afraid to explore new skills, too. New skills may open unexpected doors.

Expanding your skills demonstrates a commitment to growth and increases your value in the professional arena.

Be Proactive in Your Applications

Looking to secure a new job? Be proactive in your applications. Seek out new opportunities. Make sure to customize your applications to fit each one. Do the same with your cover letters. Each job posting is unique. Make sure your resumes and cover letters are, too.

Look at each job posting. Consider what they’re looking for. Highlight skills that align with the specific job requirements.

Utilize job search engines, company websites, and recruitment platforms to stay ahead of job postings. Set up alerts to receive timely updates and be among the first to apply. Remember, persistence pays off. Follow up on applications, express your enthusiasm, and showcase how you can add value to the organization.

But why stop there?

Ask for jobs that don’t exist yet!

Reach out to companies and showcase your unique skills, even without a job opening. This bold approach displays your forward-thinking mindset and puts you on the radar for potential opportunities.

Build a Strong Professional Network

Start by identifying key players in your industry of interest. How?

Find local conferences and networking events to attend. Join online forums to discuss relevant subject matter. Don’t just exchange business cards. Create conversations—share your experiences, listen to others, and offer your insights. Build relationships, not just contacts.

Connect with others in your field on LinkedIn. LinkedIn is great for sharing industry news. Join discussions, share expertise, and support others—all on one platform.

Facebook is another platform that can be used to network. Facebook allows you to connect with like-minded individuals, join industry-specific groups, and stay informed about relevant discussions and opportunities.

Build a Portfolio

A portfolio is a powerful tool. It’s also often overlooked. Portfolios are visual resumes used to stand out in a competitive job market.

Your portfolio should showcase your best work. Include finished projects, case studies, and testimonials. Choose a professional and user-friendly platform to house your portfolio. Behance is a great option.

Don’t just show off finished products in your portfolio. Include the process behind your work, too. Highlight your problem-solving approach. Include the challenges you’ve overcome. Show how you’ve grown and adapted.

Update your portfolio regularly. Showcase your latest achievements and skills. An updated and polished portfolio will impress potential employers and show them your professional journey.

Explore Side Projects

Who says you have to stop at your day job? Side projects can be a game-changer. They’re perfect for exploring your passions. Interested in writing? Start a blog. Have a knack for graphic design? Try creating vector art. Want to share some knowledge? Consider starting a podcast. The opportunities are endless.

Apart from being a creative outlet, side projects demonstrate initiative and independent management, adding diverse skills and dedication to your portfolio.

Advocate for Yourself

There is nothing more empowering than advocating for yourself. If you want something and know that you deserve it, then shoot for the stars. Waiting for recognition is a thing of the past. Actively promote your achievements, skills, and aspirations. And ask for that raise!

Start by identifying your unique strengths and accomplishments. Keep tabs on all your milestones. Pitch your value and worth. Seek out opportunities to showcase your skills, too. Contribute to challenging projects, share innovative ideas, and record your accomplishments.

Share your career goals with your supervisors and mentors. Seek feedback and express your interest in growth opportunities within the organization.

A Roadmap for Success

In 2024, don’t let feeling stuck hold you back. Set SMART goals, invest in continuous learning, and leverage online platforms for flexible education. Don’t stop there. Tailor job applications, build a robust network, and showcase your work through a well-curated portfolio.

Advocate for yourself and shape your roadmap for success in the dynamic professional landscape of 2024 and beyond.

Build the career you deserve this year. You got this!

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