Career Mistakes to Avoid in 2021
As I’ve mentioned before I’m a big fan of all things related to your career. I realized the other day that I’ve been working for over 10 years now (wow ?)! Along the way I have made my fair share of mistakes, just ask any of my bosses (ha ha!). Anyways, as I was reminiscing about my career I realized that some of the mistakes could’ve been avoided. Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t regret them because they each taught me something but, I thought I’d write this post, with hopes of encouraging my fellow career guys and gals out there to reflect on their own mistakes and learn from them to move forward and excel in their careers.
Now, let’s get started.
Thinking You’re Not Good Enough for a Job
The first mistake I can think of when looking back at my career thus far, relates to my thought about not being good enough for a job. Ever since I was little I always wanted to work in an office. I didn’t quite know what I’d be doing in an office but that’s how I pictured myself. When I first started working I started working in retail but held back from applying for any office jobs because I thought I just wasn’t good enough. It wasn’t until I actually started trying that I realized I was not only good enough but that I could also learn things along the way (which is what most people do). Anyways, sadly this wasn’t the only time I carried this thought around with me. Another area that I always wanted to work in was in the creative/social media field. At first I also thought that I just wasn’t good enough and I held back from applying for positions. Let me just say, that is a HUGE mistake. Now I know that I always have the ability to try and that a lot of times you learn things along the way, so I’m no longer holding back from pursuing any job (or hobby) I want (hence starting my blog ☺️)
Not connecting professionally with your co-workers
Mistake #2 relates to making connections in your professional life. Early on in my career when I heard about “making connections” it always seemed like such a daunting idea to me. Like how was I supposed to make such connections? I didn’t want to be the type of person that only stayed connected with someone because it was convenient and I may need something from them in the future. Boy was I wrong! First of all, always ensure that you make your best effort at staying in touch with everyone you meet in your career. This is from your very first job to your current job. An easy way to do this is through LinkedIN. (Read my post about LinkedIN tips HERE) but also, I learned from one of my previous bosses, Lauren Berger, The Intern Queen that you should always try to stay in touch at least 3 times per year. So, as you navigate through your jobs and career make sure to do your best to connect to your professional peers.
Quitting Your Job the Wrong Way
Mistake #3 relates to quitting your job. Now, reality is that you are most likely not at the job you are going to be in for the rest of your life. You are probably going to switch jobs at least a few more times before you land at the job where you’ll retire from. When it comes to quitting your job don’t do what I did at one of my first jobs, send an email letting them know you won’t be going to work anymore. Try to be as professional as possible and if possible try and stay at least 2 weeks. This closely relates to making those connections with others professionally. You never want things to end in a bad way with anyone, especially in the professional world.
Negotiating Your Salary
Mistake #4 relates to money but more specifically your salary. For the first half of my career I NEVER negotiated my salary mostly because I just felt lucky to have a job. Again, I was WRONG! If there is one thing I’ve learned in my career thus far is to always negotiate your salary. Now, I’m not saying you’ll always get what you want but you’d be surprised at the difference in salary you could have between negotiating and not negotiating.
Comparing Yourself to Others
Mistake #5 is something that I’m still in the process of learning. Oftentimes, it is so easy to compare your career to that of others but the truth is that each of us have a very different path of life, even as it relates to our career. Try and avoid doing this because it can truly hinder you advancing in your own career. Instead redirect that energy into thinking about action steps you can take to get to where you want to be.
These are just some of the mistakes that came to mind when I was reminiscing about my career for the past 10 plus years. I always like reading these kind of posts because I feel like I always learn a thing or two from others. I hope you enjoyed this post. Just remember, always try your hardest and if you make mistakes just try to remedy them and keep moving forward.
Until next time,