16 bite-sized career tips you can learn in seconds

3 minute read

Even with the best intentions, sometimes our attempts at self-improvement get thwarted by deadlines and the small issue of time. But we all need to be uplifted, re-motivated and inspired so that we can bring the best version of ourselves to work.

With that in mind, here’s a short list of bite-sized career tips that you can learn and put into action right now.

First impressions are made in 30 seconds

Research shows that first impressions really do count. People will make a decision about your character in less than a minute, so make sure that you’re leaving the right one with these tips.

It’s OK to question authority

Many of us hesitate to question the authority of people who are in a slightly higher position than our own. Know that your opinion is valuable and you have a right to contribute to the direction of your team.

Always address stress

There are no benefits to stress. You may be feeling the pressure to constantly hit targets, fulfil expectations or be overloaded with work. There are plenty of things that you can do to tackle stress and regain balance at work.

Emotional intelligence is key

People with high levels of EI are better able to work with others and adjust to change. With all of the adjustments that often occur in the charity sector, adaptability is an essential skill.

If you want to go quickly, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.

Whilst there is nothing wrong with enjoying the solitude of working alone, there’s also a time and a place for banding together as a team. Success requires more than the work of a single person. When making decisions focus on long-term gains, not just short term satisfaction.

Being nice goes a long way

Likeability is seriously underplayed in the career domain. Yes, skills and experience play a huge role but, never underestimate the value of genuinely being a pleasant person to be around so that people remember you for all of the right reasons.

Everyone you meet has something valuable to teach you

We live in a world where technology and information is everywhere. It also means that our journey is full of learning opportunities, many of which can come from our peers. No matter what stage of their career – everyone has the capacity to teach you something so be prepared to listen.

Stop apologising for no reason

Apologies are meant to be a sincere acceptance of something that was wrong. They shouldn’t be an auto-response to small issues and adjustments so pay close attention to how often you’re apologising.

Be guided by your gut and intuition

Have an inkling that something isn’t quite right? Speak up. It’s better to be safe than sorry, so never underestimate the power of your intuition or what you could potentially uncover.

Love your job? Good – but keep looking at other roles anyway

The only way to grow in your career is to know what you want to do in the future. Looking at new roles will give you a clear idea of what the next stage requires and what you need to do to get there.

Lead with your story, not your history

Our overlapping values and interests allow us to establish relationships with the people that we work with. So, instead of listing where you’ve worked in the past, explain why you love volunteering, what inspires you & the impact you’d love to have on the world.

Never assume defeat

This is pretty dangerous territory (both personally and professionally). Don’t assume the worst just because a situation didn’t run as smoothly as expected. Your reality is down to your perception.

Pick your battles wisely

There is no shame in walking away from a situation. Some battles are not meant to be fought – and that certainly doesn’t mean that you’re on the losing team. It just means you’ll probably be on the least stressed and sanest one.

Don’t compare yourself to others

We’re all at different stages in our life and career. It’s always easy to look over at someone and think that the grass is greener, hedge higher and picket fence perfectly placed. Appreciate the career lane that you’re in and, while it’s ok to admire others, don’t forget how much you have achieved so far.

Be led by your passions, not pushed by your problems.

Struggle is part and parcel with personal growth. During these times, it’s easy to become so focused on hardships and lose sight of our calling. Your passions will drive you to keep going, even when it gets tough so keep your eye on the prize.

Want to put some of these tips to the test? Find a job that allows you to dedicate your time to a cause that’s important to you, on CharityJob.

Jade Phillips

Marketing Manager at CharityJob. A true bookworm and social media geek, you'll find me living in pockets of online communities. Unattended snacks might go missing if left around me...

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