When you work from home for a while for the same company, it may be too easy to become stagnant in your career. Are you still in the same position where you started working from home, or have you made upward career progress?
If you haven’t moved forward, a few changes might be in order. These may involve stepping out of your comfort zone so be prepared for this, but it’s for your own good – buckle up and enjoy the ride.
When you begin working at home, you will most probably have specific reasons for doing so. Working from home lowers your overhead expenses, such as petrol costs and wear and tear on your car. If needs must, you can work at home and save on other expenses that might be hitting your pocket – no need for expensive lunches out with colleagues, for example. Those who have worked from their home have found it a good way to improve their financial picture and stay afloat during tough times.
If you want to continue at home work, staying at the same level where you started is not very appealing and can be de-motivating. So, how can you move up within the company and/or gain the skills to make you more marketable when you are ready to go for that promotion or even look to another company?
Making the Hard Change
It’s often suggested when you decide to work from home that you choose something that is of interest to you. They can get you in the door of companies you believe you will be happy to work for. But what happens further down the line, after restlessness has kicked in? What more can you do to spark renewed interest in your career? It often requires moving away from what you know towards new skills.
Put yourself in the shoes of someone hiring. Do you employ someone who has stayed at the same level of knowledge for a few years, or one that has put themselves out to keep up to date with training and new technology in their chosen field?
It is a fact that additional skills can make you more marketable to companies who are looking for employees that can provide efficiency and improved productivity on several levels. Here are a few tips to guide your pursuit of a more in-depth career experience.
Adopt a positive mindset to learn new skills
Have a look at online job boards, and the company intranet. What types of jobs are listed, and what skills are they looking for? If you don’t possess those skills, maybe it is time to consider investing your own time to at the least get a grasp of those new requirements. You may find some that really interest you, and you will want to study in depth.
If you are not moving forward with your skillset, you are in fact moving backwards, as others are pushing past you.
Am I motivated enough?
Let’s be blunt about this, if you want motivation, take a look at the salary that is offered for higher level positions. Those who have the ability to do more, bring more benefit to the company, are more valuable to employers. It makes more sense to pay one person more money to do several jobs than trying to find several people to perform one job each. Even with this information, the ball won’t move forward without your initiative.
Push beyond your comfort zone
Learning new skills is never easy, but doesn’t have to be hard either if you approach it with a positive outlook. Who says that you can’t learn if you really want to?
Give it a try. Take a class. Sign up for a webinar. Look for free seminars or online opportunities to learn new skills. But be realistic about the time it will take. If you have small kids and need to work full time, it would be quite difficult to go to school full time as well. Choose options for career development that fit your lifestyle, even if that means taking a couple of hours that may well be wasted in front of the TV to become more marketable.
Making choices manageable will sustain the commitment to learning new skills. If you are ready for more money and responsibility in your at home job, you will need to adopt a positive mindset and take that first step out of your comfort zone.