Tips for progressing at work

Job progression to is different to everyone and goals can vary massively. Some think progress is getting a new job at a different company, while others want a promotion at their current job. Some may look more inwardly and go for personal progression, such as learning new skills and advancing your pay check.

Whatever your goal, we can help. Keep reading to see our top tips and see how you can design and create a successful plan for progress. 

1) Think about your goals 

Without concrete career goals, it can be hard to see which direction in your career to move on to. The first part of your career progression plan should be to decide on what you want your goal to be. By doing this, you can manage your career path and get an estimate of how long it will take.

Take the time to really think about what you want to achieve from your day-to-day work. When you set goals for your career, you should always make sure they are SMART – specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely. Also, make sure you think about a timeframe - will it take you weeks, months or years to reach your goal? 

2) Find opportunities available to you 

Be sure to keep an eye out for any available career development opportunities and training courses! These will often help you gain communication and leadership skills which can be great to further your own career.

But it's not just the important skills and confidence you'll gain. You'll also build real, long-term professional networks and mentoring relationships within your industry. These personal relationships are vital for keeping up to date with news and opportunities in your industry sector. It could be a good idea to find a mentor you could shadow.

3) Make notes of your achievements 

To progress in your career, you'll need to be your own cheerleader. Don't just hope that by simply doing your job well that the human resources department will notice all your hard work. Make note of all the great things you have achieved.

Having visibility of your career goals and achievements is a great way of showcasing what you have achieved. This is true not just for your organisation but also to show potential employers what you can provide.  

4) Book regular meetings with your line manager 

Receiving feedback during your performance review from your line manager will always be extremely valuable. It's a great opportunity for you to chat about your strengths and discover the areas you need to work on. These are key for helping you advance in your career.

You can also use your time together to review projects and topics you may be interested in and voice them. This can help you discover even more opportunities for yourself.

5) Step outside your comfort zone 

It might feel scary, but to progress at work, you might need to try something outside your usual remit. Staying in your comfort zone might mean you miss out on new challenges and the ability to grow your career path. Push yourself to increase your productivity by asking for new projects allowing you to take on new responsibilities. 

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About the author

Jessica Holloway Swift

Employability & Skills Marketing Manager

Jess is an experienced marketing manager with a special interest in employability marketing and learner engagement.