What’s the best career advice you’ve ever received?
To help you with your career path, we asked business leaders and HR experts this question for their best advice. From active listening to working on relationships, there are several tips that may help you be successful in your future career endeavors.
Here are ten great pieces of career advice::
- Always Have A Beginner’s Mindset
- Be Part Of The Solution
- Know What You Want, And Why You Want It
- Reverse Engineer Your Career
- Know Your X-Factor
- Communication Is Key
- Working On Relationships Daily
- Follow the Tailwinds
- Be An Active Listener
Always Have A Beginner’s Mindset
A mentor in a past life always told me to have a novice mindset when it comes to anything worth pursuing. We live in a world that is changing so fast that it is easy to settle into habits that may have made sense 2–3 years ago and are now obsolete. As a Talent Acquisition Leader, the way we recruit now is 100% different than just 5 years ago. Legacy job boards have given way to career-driven social media boards that make applying for a job as simple as a single click. Artificial Intelligence has allowed our recruiting teams to shift our time to more service-focused tasks. All of which have made our candidate experience better because of a novice mindset.
Steven Brown, DP Electric Inc
There’s a lot of great Steve Jobs anecdotes floating around offices and boardrooms, but perhaps my favorite is how he once gathered Apple’s top minds together and asked them what the company should focus on next. After much belaboring, they settled on a top ten. Then Jobs crossed off the bottom seven and said: “We can only do three.”
It can be hard to focus on what’s important when you have a long list of opportunities that all seem super valuable or relevant. But by trying to do everything great, you ironically make nothing great. Don’t overextend or spread yourself too thin. Simplify your goals to just a few things, and then focus on doing them to the best of your ability.
Jessica Rush, Chief Talent Officer, Paradox
Be Part Of The Solution
The best piece of advice I have received during my HR career is to always be part of the solution; otherwise, you are part of the problem. Being part of the solution enables you to enter the inner circle of influence that exists in every company or profession, and this is where respect, job security, promotions, higher salary, and new opportunities lie.
Ronald Kubitz, Forms+Surfaces
Know What You Want, And Why You Want It
I think we get closer to accomplishing our dreams and life goals by optimizing our time and following our intuition. I’ve learned to optimize my time better by being clear on personal and work goals and why they are important to me and using technology to help me stay organized and track the small tasks that are important for accomplishing a specific goal.
Olamide Olowe, Topicals
Reverse Engineer Your Career
The best tip I’ve ever received is to proactively design your career by reading postings for the job you want in 5-10 years. Identify the credentials, experience, and achievements that will qualify you for that CEO or VP of Sales role. Then, focus on what you can do today to earn those qualifications.
Joni Holderman, Thrive! Resumes
Know Your X-Factor
The world is small and was made even smaller with the rise of remote work. It’s an ugly reality, but even if you’re “one in a million”, a cynical statistician would quip that, in this world, there are seventy-eight hundred people just like you. While factually inaccurate, the point is you have to know and be able to articulate your X-factor – that special something that makes you better than the other candidates. See it. Believe it. Share it.
Tim Toterhi, Plotline Leadership
Communication Is Key
From my hiring experience, I’ve learned that most employees make the same mistakes. So my recommendation is usually the same across the board: The number one skill across all industries is, and probably always will be communication. If you drop communication, your employer's process fails or gets delayed. Improving your communication to be more proactive is the best thing you can do for your career.
Wesley Burger, CloudTask
Working On Relationships Daily
The relationships we have with the people around us come with many professional payoffs. Building relationships with your peers, employees, customers, suppliers, and management enhances the value you create for the business. However, in order to maximize the value of your relationships, you must be willing to work on them daily. This means being a team player, and honoring relationships with your colleagues, your clients, and yourself. In this age of technology, left to our own devices (excuse the pun), we aren't connecting. So, be intentional and build relationships. That is what ultimately moves you forward not only in your career but in your life.
Caroline Lee, CocoSign
Follow the Tailwinds
In cycling, following the tailwinds means going in the same general direction as a course of movement. Tailwinds are the path of least resistance, and in a career, sometimes that’s a smart decision. Whether the tailwinds lead you towards a fast-growing company or a hot industry, pursuing opportunities that don’t have strong resistance can enable you to accomplish more in your career.
Brett Farmiloe, Markitors
Be An Active Listener
Taking the time to really listen to others—inside and outside of the workplace—is an important skill for career development and one of the best ways to learn and engage others in authentic conversations. The best workplace mentors and allies ask thoughtful questions and listen carefully to the answers.
Andrew Rawson, Traliant