professional development

[caption id="attachment_18628" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Even in tough times you can advance your career"] [/caption] You might think tough economic times mean that any plans for advancing your career are on hold. In fact, the current economic climate provides an ideal opportunity for you to take advantage of the situation. Here are some ideas to help you advance your career: Gain new skills We have all heard the countless stories about dwindling numbers of workers and the increased workloads within organisations. If you find yourself in this situation, rather than seeing it as an overwhelming threat, try looking at the opportunities the situation presents. Taking on extra duties could enable you to develop new skills which will make you more marketable or provide leverage to ask for a pay rise and higher status. Grasp any opportunities that arise to job shadow or receive on-the-job training and mentoring from other staff members. Be on the lookout...

[caption id="attachment_18641" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Volunteer to help your career"] [/caption] It's Volunteer's Week and I thought now would be the perfect time to discuss the benefits of volunteering and how it can boost your career. There are so many advantages to volunteering but here are the main ones: Gain work experience It’s a fact that employers look more favourably upon candidates with a combination of qualifications and experience than they do on those with qualifications alone. One of the most common questions I'm asked by graduates and career changers is how to gain practical work experience when no one is prepared to give you a go? Short of finding an entry-level role or internship, volunteering is one of the best ways to gain practical work skills and experience. Professional development As a volunteer, it's likely you'll gain access to professional development opportunities since many hosts provide free training for volunteers. This could take the form...

[caption id="attachment_18658" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Become an employed graduate"] [/caption] Although the latest economic reports suggest the grip of the recession has been ever-so-lightly loosened, the economy remains slow continuing its impact on the job market. Graduates are finding the job opportunities they expected to be waiting for them after years of study are not as plentiful as they had hoped. A dwindling number of graduate positions and large numbers of emerging students make for a frustrating combination. The lucky ones make industry connections alongside their studies moving into roles straight from university or college. Mature graduates with little or no experience in their new field of qualification often find it difficult to secure an entry level position, with some reporting they have had to take extended periods of unpaid work in an effort to gain relevant work experience. Not an ideal situation if you have a family to support, a mortgage and...