The Best Tips for Long-Term Career Growth
The life of a data scientist or business intelligence professional is often a lonely one.
With the average company employing only one or two data science or business intelligence professionals, relying on your coworkers to help you solve challenges and remain on top of industry trends can be difficult for many in the field.
This is where your career development can take a serious hit.
While employees at larger companies have access to free skills training, development opportunities, and simply more brains to bounce ideas off of, working at a smaller organization has many drawbacks in this regard.
If you work for a small to midsize company, it’s time to take matters into your own hands.
To remain sharp, ahead of trends, and relevant, you need to solve complex tasks, learn new patterns, instruments and so much more! But how can we do that? Especially if we lack a good amount of confident colleagues around you?
Following trends, keeping up with new tools, and discovering the latest industry techniques will help you maintain your grasp of what’s pushing the industry forward.
But finding these can be difficult. This articles outline little-known as well as popular methods to grow your career and keep up with the changing landscape of your industry.
Continue reading to learn:
- How your working environment shapes your career.
- Why surrounding yourself with great experts matters
- How online communities help you achieve your goals
- Where to find resources for the latest industry trends and career growth tips
How Your Working Environment Shapes Your Career
Let’s start at ground zero. Your workplace will make one of the greatest impacts on your career.
Company culture is a buzzword that’s attracted lots of attention over the years, and there’s a reason why. Companies that create a sense of belonging, foster transparency, encourage diversity, support your career growth, and provide a positive work environment for their staff often see greater productivity and worker satisfaction. Together, these factors translate into more career opportunities and personal happiness.
Positive work environments that promote a nurturing work culture lead to employee success and happiness both personally and professionally.
Positive work environments can take on many forms but are most often characterized by:
- a productive atmosphere
- open and honest communication
- compassionate team members
- positive reinforcement
- growth opportunities
- positive thinking
- good work-life balance
According to the World Economic Forum, people who are happy at work report higher productivity and creativity, set higher goals for themselves, and are more optimistic about succeeding.
If you’re among the 60% who are not happy at work, start taking on the following habits at work to feel more satisfied in your professional life:
- Commit yourself to continuously improving throughout your career. Enroll in courses, take advantage of at-work learning opportunities and attend conferences.
- Establish goals you believe in. By setting goals for your career, you’re able to look beyond everyday workplace problems.
- Don’t focus on issues beyond your control.
- Avoid negative people as much as possible and nurture your sense of humor.
Why Surrounding Yourself with Experts Can Improve Your Career
You’ve probably heard that you’re the average of the five people you spend the most time with, and the same rule applies to your career.
Surrounding yourself with people who have a more diverse skill set, deeper industry knowledge, or more years of experience automatically supports your career growth.
Many professionals are unaware of what they are capable of until they see others achieve, and when you surround yourself with positive, successful people, they subconsciously challenge you to reach your greatest potential.
This will also help you in seeking out leaders in your field who are willing to share shortcuts, mistakes, tips, and tricks to help you get ahead.
And if you can’t physically surround yourself with leaders, ensure that you’re learning from them daily through podcasts, social media channels, or other online media.
In summary, interacting with more successful leaders in your life can easily be done by:
- surrounding yourself with people who have more advanced skill sets, greater years of experience, and broader industry knowledge.
- asking leaders to share mistakes, learning experiences, and shortcuts, if any.
- introducing leaders into your daily life through media such as daily podcasts and Twitter feed, if you can’t do this in person.
Why Online Communities Are More Important Than Ever
With social distancing making it harder to make connections in person, online communities are emerging as the primary way to meet new people, share and learn.
Whether you’re joining a Slack or Facebook group, nurturing your LinkedIn contacts with unique content or creating a Discord community of your own, the power of online networking via communities has exploded over the past two years.
Slack and Discord communities in particular have grown in popularity with data professionals, who flock to these apps to meet people from different countries and backgrounds. They allow you to:
- instantly communicate with large groups of like-minded individuals in your field.
- obtain industry knowledge through AMA (“ask me anything”) sessions.
- connect with industry members around the world you otherwise would never meet in person.
- stay up-to-date with emerging industry conversations, trends, and tools.
Keep Up with Your Industry and the Latest Skills, Tools, and Trends
Data-related industries tend to move quickly, which makes it hard for professionals to update their skills, add new tools to their toolkits, and stay up-to-date with emerging industry trends.
If you’ve chosen a nurturing workplace, surround yourself with experts, and access online communities related to your industry regularly, you won’t have much difficulty staying on top of emerging trends and tools. And your workplace may even invest in upgrading your skills.
Doing so helps you be more productive at work, makes promotions more accessible, keeps your resume updated, and makes you more attractive to recruiters.
Here are more of our favorite ways of keeping our career toolkits sharp:
- Reading industry blogs and news regularly.
- Subscribing to industry-related newsletters and podcasts.
- Becoming certified in the use of the latest tools.
- Enrolling in an online course.
As you can see, there isn’t one simple answer to growing your career. It involves consistency and nurturing throughout your professional years. But the benefits that can come from daily commitment pay off through increased earning potential, more achievements, and personal and professional satisfaction.
If you’re ready to commit to the growth of your career in data science and business intelligence, we have more coming your way. Stay tuned for articles, cheat sheets, and webinars designed to help you make the most of your career.