For some people, landing that dream job can feel like a bit of a pipe dream.
After all, not everyone gets the chance to do what they want for the rest of their lives and get paid for it, right?
But those who do get to make money out of doing what they love would tell you that it absolutely can be done. That said, there’s no fast way to get there — you have to continuously put in the hard work.
Here are some things you can start doing today to score that dream job:
1. Start small
Unfortunately, you can’t expect to get your dream job right away—you have to work your way up.
It’s important to understand what roles will get you to where you want to be. For example, TV producers don’t start out as producers right away. You need to gain the right set of skills and a reasonable amount of experience.
The Telegraph explains that you need to develop a profile for your dream job, which means finding opportunities to prepare you for the role. Look for additional educational courses or online learning that will benefit you.
Another good way is to talk to a career coach and get assessments on the improvements you need to make to help you get your dream job.
2. Be proactive
If you’re currently employed and you’re looking to go to the next level, step up.
The Motley Fool points out that simply clocking in, day in and day out, won’t cut it and it doesn’t necessarily qualify you for better opportunities.
In incredibly saturated industries like marketing and creative companies, if you dream of reaching a top role you have to proactively ask your boss what you need to do to land that role.
Volunteer for projects and tasks that don’t normally fall under your current job description. Show some initiative to move up the ladder by actively looking for new ways to help your team and the business.
3. Develop your networking skills
Cosmopolitan notes that networking can land you your dream job, but you have to remember that it’s a two-way street. Make yourself available for people without waiting for them to return the favour immediately.
In the legal industry, for example, connections are vital to success. U.S. Legal consulting firm Special Counsel reveals that 70% of their associate placements are actually for positions that were never advertised or posted publicly. This is a direct reflection of not just their job market knowledge, but also how they rely on long-term strategic partnerships between leading law firms and their pool of experienced associates.
In any industry, genuine bonds, in your company and outside of it, will help you reach your goals because these people are more likely to recommend you and promote your talent.
4. Appreciate criticism
Even though you know you’re good at what you do, you can’t possibly know everything — you’re bound to make mistakes! So, learn to take criticism as a positive thing.
Not enough people use criticism to their advantage. For one, when you know your weaknesses, you have a better chance of making the necessary improvements.
Criticism can also serve as a great motivator—everything you learn about yourself through feedback can serve as inspiration to try and do better the next time around.
5. Take risks
It’s never too late to go after your dream job, especially if you’re in one that doesn’t fulfil you.
If your gut is telling you that something isn’t right, then it probably isn’t. If your current job isn’t rewarding, take the risk and open yourself up to other opportunities. Let your new and improved networking skills guide you to your dream job.
Don’t be afraid to reach out to people and express your desires for a new role. If your current company isn’t appreciating what you bring to the team, you have every right to chase after a career that will make you happy.
This article was written by Emma Norris and originally published on A Girl In Progress.