The term “proactive” is bandied about quite frequently, seemingly without any true quantitative meaning. And yet, if you want to advance your accounting career, there are several things that you can do to green light its trajectory.
Whether it’s networking internally, finding a mentor, or staying abreast of changes in your industry, being proactive allows you to see your career more clearly, make smart decisions and increase your value to your organization. Here’s what you need to do to advance your accounting career.
Build Relationships Internally
Here’s the thing about networking, most of us do it when we need something, like a word in the right ear. Effective networking, however, is something you do strategically, not at the last moment. Whether it’s using a collaborative communication style with your team, connecting with people in different departments, or doing a favour for a manager, building business partnerships positions you for success (think promotion or high-profile projects) down the road.
Track Changes in Your Industry
In order to stay marketable, you must stay relevant. In an industry that is constantly undergoing change, your value lies in your ability to anticipate industry shifts and stay on top of them. Join relevant groups on LinkedIn, keep up with legislative developments, and take the necessary courses to grow your skill set accordingly.
Find a Mentor
At some point in your quest to advance your accounting career, you will need an advocate. A mentor, who has been guiding and grooming your career, could be just the person you need at this critical juncture. Your mentor provides a seasoned ear for your questions and concerns. He/she can guide you through the rough political waters of your organization and can serve as an invaluable ally.
Investing in your accounting career by networking strategically, finding a mentor and following changes in your industry, increases your marketability and avoids the tunnel vision that can be a challenge for any working professional.