Five Strategies for Investing in Your Career

These five strategies offer practical steps for motivated employees looking to stay ahead of the pack.

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Whether you are a long-tenured leader, a new manager, or an individual contributor with rising responsibilities, it’s always valuable to take stock of your career path and make investments for the future. These five strategies, sourced from research articles published by MIT Sloan Management Review, offer practical steps for motivated employees looking to stay ahead of the pack.

Assemble Your Support Team

In today’s complex business environment, managers and leaders need an array of advisers, mentors, and role models to provide critical information and support at defining moments in their careers. Just as an organization could not exist with a single-member board, the notion that one mentor could fit all of your developmental needs is similarly flawed. In “Assembling Your Personal Board of Advisers,” the authors identify six types of personal advisers who together provide a broad combination of experience and career support.

Invest Your Time Wisely

Making the right decision about which projects and partnerships to enter into seems like it should be easy. But it often isn’t. Being smart about where you devote your resources — your personal time, energy, and finances, as well as those of your organization — means being smart about not just time management but about choice management. That means being proactive and disciplined about asking why you think a project is a good fit. It also means paying attention to your inner skeptic.

Determine Volatility Ahead

The dreaded “d-word” — disruption — can often feel buzzy, but industry volatility is a real threat for many workers. To stay ahead of developments that may disrupt your professional life, you must make two evidence-based diagnoses: How volatile is your industry? And what explains the volatility? The answers will equip you to preemptively disrupt your own career.

As the authors of the article “What to Do When Industry Disruption Threatens Your Career” write:

“Whether you decide to make a modest shift within your own company or within your industry — or to switch industries altogether — will depend on what your diagnosis uncovers, your own career goals, and what options are realistic for you. The only naive approach is to assume that industry volatility is just something for the company to worry about and not a concern for you as a sole actor.”

Don’t Let Job ‘Fit’ Sway You

In her article, “


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Jadson C. Santos
If you are still unsure how to carry out each of these strategies, I would say the following:
1 - For Assemble Your Support Team - Make and strengthen your connections. You can use Linkedin or another professional network for this. Get in touch with professionals you admire, see about their work and comment, create a healthy relationship and contribute ideas to your network.
2 - Invest Your Time Wisely - Think and, most importantly, act to understand your purpose. Get involved as a volunteer, get to know different areas, read books with different themes... Thus, you will be aware of what is important to you and where you should place your investments.
3 - Determine Volatility Ahead - Find reliable news channels on topics you are involved with (MIT SMR, HBR ...) Stay up to date on what happens and that could affect your career in a positive or negative way.
4 - Don’t Let Job ‘Fit’ Sway You - Seek feedback constantly. Use your peers, managers, and leaders as a source of information about yourself, so you will have different views on your skills and challenges.
5 - Hone Your 21st Century Survival Skills - Be a lifelong learner! Use opportunities in your daily life to improve your communication, negotiation, coaching, time, and energy management skills.
To put it all together, try to balance your life with leisure activities, physical and mental exercises, family, and hobbies and so you will have a sustainable career. :D