Everyone wants to be able to advance their career, but oftentimes it’s difficult to dedicate large chunks of your time to learning new things or checking out new tools in your field.
Practices to do
There are definitely a lot of different ways to keep up, but below are six that everyone should aim to do:
Subscribe to blogs—and make time to read most of them. You likely already have your Google Reader full of great resources and information, but how often do you get a chance to read all of those new posts? Set aside an hour during the week or on the weekend to read and bookmark posts that can be especially beneficial for your career.
Sign up for webinars and teleseminars. A lot of professionals, bloggers and websites host webinars and teleseminars everyday. No matter what field you’re in, it can always be useful to learn from someone else’s experience, mistakes and successes.
Attend conferences and networking opportunities. Make a list of conferences in your industry that you’d like to attend. Be sure to check out the agenda ahead of time in order to maximize your trip. Connect with other attendees before you go and during the conference downtime. Not sure where to look? Join a professional or alumni association or check out these sites:
Keep your eyes peeled for boot camps and exclusive programs. Quite a few bloggers in various industries offer special programs for small groups to learn from their expertise. Many of these do cost money—but you’re essentially paying for the opportunity to work one-on-one with a seasoned professional in your field.
Read the latest books, magazines and industry publications. Pay attention to new book releases in your area of expertise and invest in those you’d like to read in your spare time. Check out various magazines that can help your career and decide on a select few to subscribe to. Look for official industry websites and see if there are other publications they come out with during the year that you’d like to read.
Subscribe to e-mail newsletters related to your field. Peek around at your favorite websites to see if they offer e-newsletters with monthly updates, tips and advice that you may not see on their site. Don’t worry—you can always unsubscribe later if you don’t find the information relevant!
What are your best tips for staying current in your career?
Heather R. Huhman is a career expert and founder & president of Come Recommended, a career and workplace education and consulting firm specializing in young professionals. She is also the author of #ENTRYLEVELtweet: Taking Your Career from Classroom to Cubicle (2010), national entry-level careers columnist for Examiner.com and blogs about career advice at HeatherHuhman.com.