Six Steps to Advance Your Career

Don't rely on your boss to grow your career. Here's how to do it yourself.

by Caroline Dowd-Higgins • Member { View Profile }
Caroline Dowd-Higgins, author of "This Is Not the Career I Ordered," maintains the career reinvention blog of the same name (

5. Know Your Value. As you navigate your career-advancement journey, you will add experiences and professional strengths to your accomplishments over time. It’s important to know what you do well and what is desirable in the marketplace in your particular field so you can plan your strategy accordingly. Knowing your special sauce will give you a competitive advantage and enable you to set yourself apart from the competition. This is especially important when negotiating for a raise or a new opportunity.

6. It May Be Time to Move On. In some organizations, moving up in the ranks is just not possible no matter how stellar your performance is due to rigid, job-classification structures and stagnant HR policies. If you can’t move up to achieve the opportunity you deserve, you should think seriously about moving out of your organization and into another where you can bloom. It’s up to you to recognize when there is a sticky floor and a low ceiling preventing your professional growth.

Don’t rely on your boss to grow your career. You alone have accountability for where you want to go. If your current boss is not star material, giving you opportunities to grow within an organization that you love, it may be time to look for one that is. After all, you are in control of your career destiny. You have the power to take charge of your career future. Game on!

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