They say that life is like a revolving door. We work so hard in high school to obtain our good grades and make our parents proud. If there is one important lesson that I have learned over time, it has to be the significance of taking advantage of an excellent education. Knowledge can be pivotal in determining our success or failure in life. The road that we follow may be bumpy, but to make it much smoother, there are a few tips that are best to store away in your memory bank.
I have worked in the finance area for close to 26 years and there are five helpful tips that come to my mind after my years in this chosen career.
1. Be flexible and keep your mind open to change. Working for large corporations has its advantages and disadvantages. The corporate lifestyle can become overwhelming at times. You can sometimes feel that you are more of a number than a name, and it may be difficult concept to swallow. It is inevitable that the corporate world is forever growing and changing each and every day. Flexibility can be far-reaching and having an open mind can lead to a more satisfying professional life. Resisting change can lead to frustration and sometimes even failure. We live in the digital age and it is best to keep in mind that with change comes excitement. Uncertainty can certainly be changed into opportunity. Make every day a challenge and your career will go far.
2. Take initiative and be the team player. Time and time again, you will hear that it is better to be a leader than a follower. The importance of being an initiator is seen as a stand-out quality. A finance career, as with many careers, is filled with varying responsibilities and bosses always seem to treasure the employee who can work with little supervision and plenty of self-initiative. Not having to micro-manage employees can be very helpful to a boss who doesn’t have enough hours in the day. Self-starters are seen as promotable and stars who will certainly go far. Leadership should be a goal that we all strive towards. Not only is initiative important, but being a team player is one of the most valuable qualities that you can possess. Sharing ideas and brainstorming with each other can make every day fortuitous. Teamwork makes a job much easier to complete in a shorter amount of time. If you are easy to get along with and others enjoy working with you, every day is pleasurable and we all begin to take pride in our work.
3. When you complain, make sure that you have a solution in mind. No matter what your career may end up being, there are going to be good days and there are going to be bad days. Obstacles and road blocks are sure to pop up when you least expect them to. Unfortunately, complaining is a normal habit in life, but in your professional life, complaining can sometimes become a trait that bosses do not enjoy dealing with on a constant basis. I have had many bosses over the life of my career, and if there is one similar thing I have learned from each of them, it is the fact that if you are going to complain, make sure that you seek out a solution. Constant complaining only makes you problematic and can be very unproductive. With that negative energy, find a solution that could possibly change the entire situation and turn your career around. Your boss will recognize you in positive ways.
4. Use every situation as a learning experience. From the time you enter the corporate world to the time that you retire, you will stumble upon situations that will challenge you, situations that will make you stand out as a star, situations that you may never have been taught the typical way to handle in school. Taking on the situation whether the outcome be good or bad, can always become a learning experience both professionally and personally. I can assure you that you will grow with each encounter and prosper in your career as situations unfold and you take them on. If you walk into every situation with the glass being half full instead of half empty, it will profit you in the end.
5. You can accomplish whatever you set your mind to. Having confidence in your capabilities can catapult you to the sky. We all must set goals and never give up on our dreams. Remembering that you can do anything that you set your mind to is one of the most important lessons that you could ever learn in life. Sometimes the most herculean of tasks takes more effort and determination, but can build mountains of courage and confidence from within. Never say, “I can’t do that.” Always say, “I can do that and I will do that.”
No matter whether we realize it or not, our careers shape our entire being. If you keep these five useful tips in mind, you are sure to go far not only professionally but personally as well.