5 Practical Actions To Move Forward In Your Career

As an accountant or professional you are likely to be pretty ambitious.  Of course there’s often a gap between being ambitious and actually achieving the results that you want.

So what are 5 practical actions can you take to move forward your career and start achieving what you want in your career?

Action 1: Take stock

Before you get into doing mode, it’s sometimes useful to stop, reflect and take stock.  Ask yourself what’s really getting in the way of you moving forward.

What I’ve noticed over the years is that people sometime look at external factors that might be getting in the way.

Truth is there are always going to be external factors.  In reality there is very little you can do about them.

Internal factors that might be getting in the way include your confidence, self belief, mindset and how much you value what you have to offer.

These are things that you can do something about.

Action 2: Get feedback

People are often reluctant to actively seek feedback.  They worry that the feedback will be negative.

In fact many times it’s the complete opposite.  Others see strengths that you have that you don’t recognise yourself.

The most important thing when reviewing feedback is to pay attention to the patterns and not the points.

What I mean by this is to look at the recurrent themes both positive and negative rather than individual points of view.

Action 3: Invest in your professional development

My employer doesn’t pay for training is one of the most common things that I hear.

This might well be the case.

Equally it’s your career.  You need to own it and take personal responsibility.

I bet you invest or spend money on lots of things.

What about your professional development?  This investment has the potential to deliver significant returns for you.

Action 4: Have a career conversation

Does your boss really know what you want from your career?

In the ideal world this would be part and parcel of your review.

Chances are that in reality it never gets on the agenda unless you ask for it to be.

So next review ask for some time to be allocated to discussing your career.

Action 5: Broaden your experience

There may well be opportunities in work to broaden your experience.  Maybe you could get involved in a project or change initiative.

Alternatively there might be things that you could do outside of work that would help broaden your experience.

Could you be a school governor, a trustee for a charity or a non-executive director for a small company?

Could you take a leadership role in a club, society or association that you are part of?

The Bottom Line: It’s your career.  You have to take action to keep moving forward.  So what’s your next step?

About the Author Duncan Brodie

Since 2006 I’ve worked with in excess of 8,000 accountants and professionals in workshops, seminars and one to one helping them land their next jobs and become better leaders, presenters and business partners. Before that I spent 25 years in accountancy climbing the career ladder from Payments Clerk to FD. I’m a CIMA Fellow, Certified Professional Coach and Team Coach Facilitator.

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