Ways to Keep Your Career Dreams Alive Amid the COVID-19 Disruption
By Space Coast Daily // May 1, 2020
All over the world, millions have had to take pay cuts, be furloughed or, at best, work in difficult circumstances.
While the focus is solely on getting through this pandemic, no doubt, professionals in different fields are uncertain about how this will impact their careers.
Of course, the COVID-19 pandemic and your work situation is not something you can control. However, you can use this time to ensure your career goals are not derailed as you wait to resume a full-time workday.
Be Positive and Focus on the Future
Everyone loves working with energetic and optimistic people, and so does your employer.
Studies have shown that optimistic people experience less stress, perform better, and have more satisfaction in their work.
It’s only human to feel overwhelmed every so often, and this is perfectly understandable. If you feel a little under the weather, allow yourself some downtime and then dive right back into work.
Take Opportunities to Stand Out
With your employer facing uncertain times and possibly having to let some people go, job roles become less clear.
You can use this time to show initiative, take on extra workload, step in for other colleagues and basically, prove yourself as a loyal and motivated employee.
Instead of waiting to be given direction, think innovatively, and speak up on your ideas.
Not only will this help you remain engaged and motivated, but it will communicate favourably to your employers.
If working from home is relatively new to you, evaluate different strategies to see how best you can be productive working from home.
Improve Your Skills
Whether employed, laid off or fresh off of college, this is something you can do during this time, and whose benefits you can reap for a long time to come.
Taking an online course is affordable and convenient since you don’t have to leave the comfort of your home.
Think about an area you would like to improve on or gain expertise in, then look up online courses on the same.
If you are a recent school leaver, you might want to consider the fees free study. Launched by the NZ government in 2018, the free fees program funds tertiary education at zero costs to the student.
This is a great option to explore towards the growth of your career.
Strive to be a Team Player
People tend not to be at their best when under stress. Individuals go through more anxiety and are short on patience.
However, this is not the time to be acting out.
It is also important to remain flexible and open to challenges. You might be called upon to help identify solutions outside your line of work. Even when these tasks are outside your scope, be open to take on the challenge and to give it your best.
This level of adaptability is not only good for your employer, but it’s also good for your long-term career goals.
Expand and Nurture Your Professional Networks
Technology will allow you to nurture established networks and build new ones as you wait for this pandemic to pass.
Platforms such as LinkedIn have millions of users, drawn from both employers and professionals in your industry.
Today, employers are increasingly using such platforms to scout for and make hiring decisions.
Whichever platforms you are on, use this time to update your profile, reach out to old networks, and strive to create newer ones.
Keep Your Eye on the Ball
While the global goings-on right now is definitely unnerving, you might find that it helps to keep your eyes on the prize.
Remind yourself that this pandemic will soon be over and that you will still need to be on track with your career goals.
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