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7 Very Best Job Sites on The Web to Help You Advance Your Career

7 Very Best Job Sites on The Web to Help You Advance Your Career

If you’re not satisfied with your current job and is trying to look for one that will make you feel more fullfilled, you’re not alone. Data shows that roughly 50% of US employees aren’t satisfied with their current jobs.[1]

So how can you advance in your career? By growing in the right places.

In this article, I’ll recommend 7 best job sites to help you advance your career. You’ll need to work on the right tasks, talk to the right people, and do the right research. But before you start using any resource, you need a game plan.

The game plan to advance your career

Empower yourself by evaluating

You may already know that you’re good in your field, but you need to know more.

Here’s what I mean:

Write down your soft and hard skills.

Hard skills are ones that are more technical and taught in a classroom. For example, learning to read, write, math problems and so on.

Soft skills relate to the way you interact with others. So, the way you interact with your team and friends determine which soft skills you have.

After writing down both your hard and soft skills, determine your next steps.

Brainstorm different ways you can improve. Courses will most likely help you with improving hard skills. But, you may need to join groups such as the Toastmasters to improve your soft skills.

Use feedback to skyrocket growth

Knowing yourself is important, but you still need feedback from others.

Now that you know your strengths and weaknesses, ask your team for feedback. For example, if you feel that you’re good at crunching numbers, ask a coworker for their honest feedback. You might find out they feel the same or that you need to improve in some areas.

Most companies have semi-annual or annual performance reviews.

Use this time to get feedback from your manager. Show them you’ve done your homework by letting them know which areas you’re looking to improve. They can offer you advice on the next best steps to take to advance in your career.

ClearCompany’s survey revealed that engaged employees received feedback at least once per week.[2] Chances are that if you’re not receiving constant feedback you’re not growing.

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Make it a priority to get feedback from your team to make faster progress in your career.

Setting goals are a sure-fire way to succeed

“If you fail to plan, you’re planning to fail” – Benjamin Franklin

Goal setting

is the most important task in reaching success. Think about it, if you have no direction, how will you ever know you’ve reached your destination?

Goal setting sounds simple, but this is where many people run into trouble.

By setting a goal, you’re using an outcome as your guide for which actions you’ll make. Take a project manager for example, who aims to get his PMP certification. After learning more about the test, he sets a goal to get this certification within 3 months.

Although this goal is specific, break it down further. Using the example above, the project manager can set a daily goal to study for 1 hour for the exam instead.

Make sure that your goals are SMART. And once you’ve broken down your goals, write them down in a journal.

A proven way to grow faster

You took time to plan. You’ve discovered your strengths and weaknesses, plus received feedback from your team. But that’s not all, you’ve also set SMART career goals.

Are you done? Almost, but now it’s time to work smarter and not harder. Take advantage of the many great resources out there to help you advance in your career.

Best job sites to kick-start your career in the right path

Here are the 7 best jobs sites to help advance your career:

1. MindTools

Emotional intelligence is an important skill to master.[3] A great site to help you improve this skill is MindTools. They offer many great resources to help you improve your emotional intelligence. Start by reading their blog daily to become more knowledgeable in this field.

So what is emotional intelligence? It’s the ability to manage your own emotions as well as the emotions of others. It helps you build better connections with your team, and handle pressure better.

Another trait of emotional intelligence is empathy. This involves seeing someone else’s perspective and feelings. For example, if your manager has many deliverables due, you may decide to offer him/her help.

Emotional intelligence will open many doors for you. In today’s workforce, it’s not enough to only have technical skills. You also need to understand others. And, improving your emotional intelligence will help you do this.

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2. LinkedIn

Why advance in your career alone if there are people who’ve already reached success? You need the help of mentors to help you avoid common mistakes and make progress quicker.

But how do you find them?

One of the best ways to do this is using LinkedIn. This social media platform has over 562 million users. And, most professionals who are serious about their careers have a LinkedIn account.

Another great feature of LinkedIn has is its degree separation feature. With this feature, you’re able to see first-degree, second, and third-degree contacts. In other words, you’re able to view friends of friends.

This is powerful because according to a Facebook study, we’re only 4 degrees away from anyone.[4]

Start by defining where you’re trying to head in your career. Then search for people who’ve already reached this level of success.

For example, if you’re wanting to be a marketing manager, type this title in LinkedIn’s search bar. Filter by people and a list of connections (first, second, or third) will display. From here you can reach out to existing contacts, or build relationships with new people.

3. VolunteerMatch

What if you could gain leadership skills and feel good about it during the process?

That’s what volunteering can do for you. A great site for you to find your next volunteering opportunity is VolunteerMatch.

So why volunteer?

In order to advance in your career, you need to be a leader. That’s because they’re equipped to make important decisions and collaborate with others.

And this is where volunteering shines. Research from Big Lottery Fund revealed that many of their volunteers reported feeling more confident.[5] Other benefits included improved social skills, and feeling part of a community.

All the traits mentioned above contribute to becoming a good leader. A big reason why it’s a great option for those looking to grow while impacting other people’s lives.

4. Mr.Money Mustache

Don’t fall trap in choosing a career only for the money.

Choosing the right career is challenging. But even more challenging when you’re stuck choosing between a career that pays more. Chances are your finances are preventing you from making the right career choices.

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Take, for example, a recent report that stated 8 in 10 Americans are in debt.[6] It’s no surprise why people choose to be miserable in a job they hate because it pays more.

The problem isn’t choosing a job with a higher salary. But you should choose a career that you’ll enjoy growing in. However, when you’re struggling with money, you’re prone to make bad career choices.

So how can you improve your finances?

By learning from the best. Mr.Money mustache shares worthwhile money hacks and how to reach financial independence. Immerse yourself in his blog to improve your finances. Eventually, you’ll start making better career choices.

5. Smart Passive Income

Entrepreneurs carry many key skills of high-performing employees.[7] For example, they’re self-starters, great leaders, and collaborate well with others.

The problem is most people aren’t entrepreneurs.

And while you don’t need to create the next big app, you can build something practical on the side. Many people refer to this as their side-hustle. According to a recent survey, about 40% of Americans now have a side hustle.[8]

So what exactly is a side hustle? It’s the same as having a part-time business that helps you earn extra income. But, the best part is the experience you gain as you’re building your side-hustle.

Think about it, you’ll be doing marketing, research and delivering your product/service. You’ll understand how business functions and become a better employee for it.

Take, for example, Pat Flynn, who started his journey as an entrepreneur studying for a LEED exam. Today his site is a go-to resource for learning how to build an online business. Pat continues to inspire others on what’s possible when you work hard to build something.

Building a side-hustle won’t be easy. But because it’s challenging, you’ll gain new skills.

Pat includes his monthly income and breaks down how his earnings on his site. You can use this as motivation when you’re struggling to build your side-hustle.

6. Coursera

Being specialized in a specific field will open many doors for you.

Research from the US Department of Labor showed that employees with certifications earned 30% more. And employees with certifications also had a 50% lower unemployment rate.[9] Without a doubt, certifications make a difference.

While it won’t guarantee any results, it will help you stand out in the competitive workforce. But don’t take any certification, first check where you want to head.

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For example, if you’re looking to be a project manager, then a PMP certification may be a logical next step. Determine if your company offers to pay for your certification or find a cost-effective route. Once you become certified, you’ll be able to stand out in a competitive workforce.

7. Glassdoor

Be a great negotiator.

How? By knowing the average salary in your industry. This way you’ll avoid getting paid a low rate and be better prepared when asking for a raise.

A survey by Robert and Half showed that only 39% of 2700 employees attempted to negotiate their salary.[10] That’s money left on the table due to fear and many other factors.

So what’s the solution? Use Glassdoor to get a glimpse of the average pay in your industry.

After doing research, focus on what skills set you apart. Use this knowledge to ask for the salary you deserve. For example, if you’re a network engineer with a Cisco certification you’d know to ask for a higher pay rate.

Achieve massive career progress

Imagine waking up at 5 am on a Monday to start your morning ritual.

A few hours later you’re refreshed and ready to start your day with intention.

Not too long ago you dreaded going to work, but you’re now taking charge of your career. The best part is you’re no longer doing repetitive tasks and earn a higher salary than you’d ever imagined.

Don’t you wish this was you?

You know have a blueprint on how to advance in your career. If you’re ready for change now is the time to do it. Many others were able to have successful careers,[11] so why can’t you?

Go ahead and reach that next level to advance in your career. The sky is your limit.

Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

Reference

More by this author

Christopher Alarcon

Finance Analyst and Founder of the Financially Well Off Blog & Podcast

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Last Updated on December 3, 2019

7 Powerful Steps to Achieve Career Success

7 Powerful Steps to Achieve Career Success

I often hear people say, “I want to be successful but don’t know where to start” or “I’ve achieved career success yet I’m not happy.” And then I ask, “what does career success mean to you?” And many have a hard time articulating their response with much conviction.

It’s common that people lack clarity, focus, and direction. And when you layer on thoughts and actions that are misaligned with your values, this only adds to your misdirected quest to achieve your career success.

A word of caution. It’s going to take some time for you to think about and work on your own path for career success. You need to set aside time and be intentional about the steps you take to achieve career success. In my opinion, this step-by-step guide is apart of your life philosophy.

1. Define Career Success for Yourself

Pause. Give yourself time and space for self-reflection.

What does career success mean to you?

This is about defining your career success:

  • Not what you think you ‘should’ do
  • Not what people may think of you
  • Not adjusting to friends and family’s judgements
  • Not taking actions based on societal or community norms

“A flower does not think of competing to the flower next to it. It just blooms” – Zen Shin

When you strip away all your external influences and manage your inner critic, what are you left with? You need to define career success that best suits your life situation.

There’s no fixed answer. Everyone is different. Your answer will evolve and be impacted by life events. Here are a few examples of career success:

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  • Work-life balance
  • Opportunities for growth and advancement
  • Feeling valued that my contributions had an impact

Now even as you reflect on the examples above, the descriptions are not specific enough. You’ve got to take it deeper:

  • What do you mean by work-life balance?
  • What do you consider to be opportunities for growth and advancement?
  • How do you like to be recognized for your work? How do you know if your contributions have had an impact?

Let’s take a look at some potential responses to the questions above:

  • I want more time with my family, and less stress at work
  • I want increased responsibilities, to manage a team, a higher income, and the prestige of working at a certain level in the company
  • I’d like my immediate leader to send me a thank-you note or take me out for coffee to genuinely express her or his gratitude. I’ll know I’ve made an impact if I get feedback from my coworkers, leaders and other stakeholders.

Further questions to reflect on to help narrow the focus for the above responses:

  • What are some opportunities that can help you get traction on getting more time with your family? And decrease your stress at work?
  • What’s most important for you in the next 12 months?
  • What’s the significance of receiving others’ feedback?

Now, I’m only scratching the surface with these examples. It takes time to do the inner work and build a solid foundation.

Start this exercise by first asking what career success means to you and then ask yourself meaningful questions to help you dig deeper.

What types of themes emerge from your responses? What keywords or phrases keep coming up for you?

2. Know Your Values

Values are the principles and beliefs that guide your decisions, behaviors and actions. When you’re not aligned with your values and act in a way that conflicts with your beliefs, it’ll feel like life is a struggle.

There are simple value exercises that can help you quickly determine your core values. This one designed by Carnegie Mellon University can help you discover your top 5 values.[1]

Once you have your top 5 values keep them visible. Your brain needs reminders that these are your top values. Here are some ways to make them stick:

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  • Write them on cue cards or notes and post it in your office
  • Take a picture of your values and use it as a screensaver on your phone
  • Put the words on your fridge
  • Add the words on your vision board

Where will your value words be placed in your physical environment so that you have a constant reminder of them?

3. Define Your Short-Term and Long-Term Goals

When writing your short-term and long term life goals, use the SMART framework – Specific Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-bound. Treat this as a brainstorming exercise. Your potential and possibilities are limitless.

How you define short-term and long-term is entirely up to you. Short-term can be 30 days, 90 days, or 6 months. Maybe long-term goals are 4 months, 1 year, or 10 years.

Here are a few self-reflection questions to help you write your goals:[2]

  • What would you want to do today if you had the power to make it the way you want?
  • If no hurdles are in the way, what would you like to achieve?
  • If you have the freedom to do whatever you want, what would it be?
  • What type of impact do you want to have on people?
  • Who are the people you most admire? What is it about them or what they have that you’d want for your life or career?
  • What activities energize you? What’s one activity you most love?

Remember to revisit your core values as you refine yours goals:

  • Are your goals in or out of alignment with your core values?
  • What adjustments do you need to make to your goals? Maybe some of your goals can be deleted because they no longer align with your values.
  • How attainable are your goals? Breakdown your goals into digestible pieces.
  • Do your short-term goals move you towards attaining your long-term goals?

Get very clear and specific about your goals. Think about an archer – a person who shoots with a bow and arrows at a target. This person is laser focused on the target – the center of the bullseye. The target is your goal.

By focusing on one goal at a time and having that goal visible, you can behave and act in ways that will move you closer to your goal.

4. Determine Your Top Talents

What did you love doing as a kid? What made these moments fun? What did you have a knack for? What did you most cherish about these times? What are the common themes?

What work feels effortless? What work do you do that doesn’t seem like work? Think about work you can lose track of time doing and you don’t even feel tired of it.[3]

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What are your desires? Try it out. Experiment. Take action and start. How can you incorporate more of this type of work into your daily life?

What themes emerge from your responses? How do your responses compare to your responses from the values exercise and your goals?

What do you notice?

5. Identify ‘Feeling’ Words You Want to Experience

Do you have tendencies to use your head or heart to make decisions?

I have a very strong tendency to make rational, practical, and fact-based decisions using my head. It’s very rare for me to make decisions using my emotions. I was forced to learn how to make more intuitive decisions by listening to my gut when I was struggling with pivotal life decisions. I was forced to feel and listen to my inner voice to make decisions that feel most natural to me. This was very unfamiliar to me, however, it expanded my identity.

Review this list of Feeling Words. Use the same technique you use for the values exercise to narrow down how you want to feel.

Keep these words visible too!

Review your responses. What do you observe? What insights do you gain from these responses and those in the above steps?

6. Be Willing to Sit with Discomfort

Make career decisions aligned with your values, goals, talents and feelings. This is not for the faint hearted. It takes real work, courage and willingness to cut out the noise around you. You’ll need to sit with discomfort for a bit until you build up your muscle to hit the targets you want.

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Surround yourself with a supportive network to help you through these times.

“These pains you feel are messengers. Listen to them” – Rumi

7. Manage Your Own Career

Not to be cynical, but no one can make you happy but yourself. If you don’t take control of your career and manage it like your own business – no one will.

Discern between things that you can control and what you can’t control. For example, you may not be able to control who gets a promotion. However, you can control how you react to it and what you’ve learned about yourself in that situation.

Summing Up

For many who have gone through a career change or been impacted by life events, these steps may seem very basic. However, it’s sometimes the basics that we forget to do. The simple things and moments can edge us closer to our larger vision for ourselves.

Staying present and appreciating what you have today can sometimes help you achieve your long-term goals. For example, if you’re always talking about not having enough time and wanting work-life balance, think about what was good in your work day? Maybe you took a walk outside with your co-workers. This could be a small step to help you reframe how you can attain work-life balance.

Remember to take time for yourself. Hit pause, notice, observe and reflect to achieve career success by getting deliberate and intentional:

  1. Define Career Success for Yourself
  2. Know Your Values
  3. Define Your Short-Term and Long-Term Life and Goals
  4. Determine Your Top Talents
  5. Identify ‘Feeling’ Words You Want to Experience
  6. Be Willing to sit with Discomfort
  7. Manage Your Own Career

“When you stop chasing the wrong things you give the right things a chance to catch you.” – Lolly Daskal

Good luck and best wishes always!

More Tips on Advancing Your Career

Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

Reference

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