by Leah Edgar | 6 January 2020
January is often a time for self-reflection and over the next few weeks, many of us will be thinking about what we have achieved in 2019 and our ambitions for the year ahead. After the hectic run up to Christmas, January can lead to candidates craving a change of direction. January is always a busy month for recruitment and job searches and listings spike throughout the month as a career change is on many people’s list of New Year resolutions.
If you are feeling this way, first things first: don’t panic! Whether you’re looking to move on from your current role or not. In this blog Consultant Leah Edgar give her five steps that will help you stand out in 2020.
1. Refresh your CV
Even if a new job isn’t at the top of your list, it’s important to keep your CV and LinkedIn profile up-to-date. Look at your current skills and update your accomplishments. I would advise you to do this when achievements are fresh in your mind rather than attempting to add in a couple of years of experience all at once in preparation for making a career move further down the line.
It’s particularly important to make sure that your LinkedIn credentials are up-to-date. As many as 94 percent of recruiters use the platform for recruiting and more and more employers are recruiting passive candidates, so you never know who will be looking at your profile!
2. Diversify your skillset
Building upon your current attributes is a valuable way to improve your career. This will help you to feel more personally fulfilled, but it will also boost your professional value. It’s also important to note that many employers will recognise employees who are motivated to learn new things and progress within their company.
A few examples could be:
- Taking an external course
- Working towards a qualification
Remember – once you enter the jobs market, this would also give you more to talk about at interview.
3.Positivity is key!
No matter how bad a day you are having, it’s important to keep your energy and positivity up at work. Having a positive mind-set, offering solutions and showing enthusiasm in your work can go a long way in your role and ultimately lead to producing a better standard of work.
It is also important to look after yourself to stay positive. Exercise, get plenty of sleep and do what you love outside of working hours. This will help improve your mood, feel refreshed and mentally prepared for your job.
4.Expand your network
Most legal vacancies are filled through networking and people you know so if you are in the legal expanding your network is essential. Even if you are not planning on changing roles, it is important to build and maintain a solid professional network for your career.
How can you do this? There are several ways including:
- Maintaining relationships and reaching out to former colleagues
- Attending external events and connecting with likeminded individuals is the perfect chance to make yourself known
- Always follow up with those you have met at meetings and events. You never know who you might find yourself forming friendships with.
5.Read – keeping your knowledge up-to-date
More than likely, you will already be aware of the developments taking place in the legal industry. However, if this isn’t the case I would strongly advise you make it one of your aims to keep on top of the latest trends and developments in the sector. This will help boost your industry knowledge and employers will always recognise this, as you are demonstrating commitment in your career.
I would advise looking on news sites such as The Law Society Gazette, or even subscribing to legal newsletters to stay on top of the latest news and updates.
Can we help you?
Taking time out to focus on your professional development is essential to maintain success. The steps above are worth considering for those at any stage within their career – it will certainly pay off in the long run!