If you’ve ever worked for a company, you’ve most likely had one of those career development talks with your manager. If your manager was any good, you were discussing your strengths, and how to grow in the areas of your passion. However, the career development within a company is, of course, focused on the company – how can you grow so that the company can get more from you?

Companies know that people come and go. Their goal is to grow day by day so that they are better off after you leave than they were before you were hired. And that should be your goal too – to continue growing after, so that when your ways part, your brand will be stronger than it was before being hired.

How can you do that? Here are three tips for you:

1. Don’t let them pick all your work.

After you prove that you can do what you’re asked to do, look around for exciting opportunities. Listen, pay attention to what’s going on, raise your hand for work that inspires you, and work where you can gain experiences that are valuable to you based on what you want to do later in life.

2. Share your growth.

As you gain new skills and knowledge, let your management know. Make sure they can take advantage of your new capabilities. If they see you growing in areas they can use for their own growth, they’ll support you. You’ll be able to craft your own job in a way that fits your interests, not just their needs.

3. Decide when it’s time to quit.

You were hired because it was beneficial to you as well as to the company. You worked hard to make both yourself and their company stronger. What can you learn going forward? In what areas do you want to gain new skills or knowledge? Can you do it within this company? When you realize that your contribution will continue to benefit the company but will be a waste of time for your own career plans, it’s time to go.

The company owns your job, but you own your career.


Henrieta Riesco is a founder of Intentional Career. As a Career Coach, she collaborates with students and business professionals on creating a fulfilling career. Her brand-building journey took her from being a teacher and a corporate trainer in Slovakia to the US where she spent 10+ years working at Microsoft as a customer advocate and a training consultant. You can follow Henrieta via Twitter, or Facebook.