THE ESSENTIALS OF CAREER GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT
Have you ever paused for a minute, look back at your career path so far and realized that you were consciously or unconsciously guided towards specializing in a particular field? Following your passion? Or seeking fulfillment as the days go by?
Many of us have risen through the ranks of our careers without taking note of the main elements that brought about the once desired growth in our business, promotion at work or securing a new job. Basically there are two classifications to career growth;
Being promoted in your organization is the best example we can easily refer to at this point. Different companies have their unique organizational structures, mostly similar based on industry requirements but are varied based on company requirements.
This type of growth happens within one organization and normally comes with a bigger pay check, added allowances, added bonuses per project completion and more. However, it accrues additional responsibility for any such individual, requires the application of your skills for innovative solutions on a daily basis, makes you the point of reference for a good or bad performance and holds you accountable for the performance of your subordinates.
For example take a look at a typical organizational structure for a Design company;
Intern >> Graduate Trainee >> Design Associate >> Design Consultant >> HOD Design >> CTO Design >> Design Director >> MD
It will take an average individual between 10 – 20 years to ascend from the position of an Intern to the very top in the industry. At intervals, certain skills, attributes and disciplines will be required of any such individual so as to be considered for a promotion to the next level up the ladder.
This type of growth is mostly characterized by a change of organization or change of an individual’s industry of specialization. Some of the primary causes of this include occupational change, desire for a bigger pay check and the need to work in a bigger organization.
A look at the banking sector; managing a branch of a microfinance bank might not be equivalent to managing a branch in a globally recognized commercial bank. This is due to the size of operations, vast services provided and large network of clients typical to a commercial bank. The need to move from the earlier to the latter is undoubtedly a good choice if you are considering a boost to your managerial skills, seeking for better business exposure, upgrading your CV for bigger opportunities and much more.
Whatever your motive is when seeking either types of growth in your career path, you should always consider a few check points below;
- Am I ready to move unto the next level? Not by doubting yourself but crosschecking if you have all it takes to ascend in your career. This gives you room to discover and make up on grey areas in your career path.
- My War Chest, my armor: When seeking for a promotion or a new job, what are the major milestones you have achieved that makes you confident on adding value in your new position/organization? Your employers will offer little commendation to how articulate, presentable, experienced or educated you are but will lay major emphasis on your contribution to your previous company or previous job position.
- What is your goal orientation? Now that you are about to secure that new job or promotion, what next? Should you relax and be satisfied that you have achieved a new fit or should you go back to the drawing board and build new goals and set new target?