3-things-your-should-be-nowwise-owl-150x150If you are like many of the women we coach, you might find yourself thinking you have got to where you are almost by accident. Certainly there may not have been much in the way of career planning or professional career advice along the way (other than some sage advice from your girlfriends over a few glasses of Pinot Grigio on a Friday night).

If that’s the case, then there couldn’t be a better time for you to work out what you should know about your career progression and future success by now.  Here are 3 key pointers, to get started.

Your Past Does Not Equal Your Future

We are indeed the sum of our parts, and everything you have done up till this point has had an impact, positive or otherwise, on your career success to date.

Like-wise everything you do now and in the future will continue to have an impact on your success, or otherwise.

That being the case, why would you leave your career planning to chance? If you have done well without any real planning on your part, imagine what might happen if you get active and start planning the next stages of your career?

Economic and workplace conditions and constantly shifting and changing. In today’s environment it’s not advisable to leave your career to chance, or worse, in the hands of other people.

Step up, take control, and create a career plan. It’s YOUR future.

Networking is Not a Necessary Evil

On the contrary, as a professional woman, networking is actually an invaluable opportunity to mix and learn from other people in and outside of your industry.

Or, that’s how you should start seeing it.

Have you noticed how many women’s networking groups have sprung up in the last few years? Everything from mums in business to young entrepreneurs are mixing, mingling and collaborating on ideas and businesses.

If you are not yet convinced of the power of networking, consider this statistic: nearly 70% of new roles are never advertised. That means they are either filled internally, or through networks.

Quite simply, you need to be in it to win it.

If you are a networking virgin and need some resources and tips to help you get started, make sure you email me and ask for a copy of the soon to be released Networking For Newbies ebook.

You Need To Stop Trying to Fit In and Stand Out

At 3 separate professional women’s networking events I attended recently, I noticed a trend. The women who had been invited to speak, or contribute to the panel discussion, were all very successful in their careers (and seemed genuinely happy with their lot in life to boot).

That’s not the trend. When asked to give an account of how they had come to be where they are today, they all did exactly the same thing in my opinion – they talked down the hard work, tenacity, talent and skills each of them had employed consistently and conscientiously to reach the point they were at.

When asked if they could give advice to other, younger women seeking a similar path, most of the women used a phrase such as “I think I was just lucky” to describe how they had progressed through their career.

In my view answers like this are letting down the generations of women following us, by effectively denigrating the talent and skills, not to mention hard work, it has taken to reach success in our careers.

People will admire you for standing out from the crowd and not being afraid to highlight your talents and achievements. Most women will be envious, because they will be too busy trying to fit in and not be noticed, while they secretly respect and admire you for standing out and being noticed.

In an earlier blog I talk about the importance of knowing your strengths and skills. I can’t emphasise enough the importance of being able to showcase who you are and what you are capable of, to leverage and catapult your career success.

These are just 3 points that you should be considering in helping you progress your career right now. There are plenty more! But take a small step today by implementing these three actions, and just see where it takes you:

  1. Create a career plan for the next 12 months. Work out what you want to achieve and how are you going to do it. Consider the resources you need, and who you need on your team to help you succeed.
  2. Email me to ask for the soon to be published Networking For Newbies e-book and go along to one of the groups suggested in it, at least once a month to start with.
  3. Think of one idea you can implement that will make you more visible within your organisation. Host a networking or client event. Write for the monthly newsletter. Join the social committee. The choice is yours.

Good luck and remember to share this with your friends, and leave a comment  to let me know the difference taking these actions makes to you.

If you’d like to learn more about how you can take ownership of your career to allow you to create a career you love, be rewarded for what you do and take control of your future, you might want to join me for a LIVE and FREE workshop, where I’ll show you exactly how to do just that. Click here to find out more.