A fulfilling career is something people strive for, not simply as a way to pay the bills, but because everybody wants to feel like they’re doing something worthwhile and rewarding. Having a good work-life balance, where you enjoy what you do and find it stimulating, engaging and fulfilling means that work is not a chore.
When does a job turn into a rewarding career?
One recent study, however, shows that over half of UK workers questioned are unhappy with their current role. Common reasons given include inadequate pay, limited progression opportunities and poor company culture – suggesting that employees aren’t feeling that they or their work is valued.
With more than half of respondents unhappy in their job, it raises the question of how to go about having a more satisfying work life balance. Trying to resolve a problem with your employment without first knowing how to go about it could seem a little overwhelming; it’s akin to planning a long car journey without knowing where you need to go. Before you can understand how to increase the chances of being happier at work, it’s necessary to carry out planning, to turn a job into a career.
Career planning as a tool
Firstly, you must decide what your ultimate career goal is. Are you aiming to be a member of the C-suite? Would you like to own your own company one day? Would you prefer a role that lends itself to your passions and abilities? Understanding your goals and where you’d like to end up is very important, as it will define your career journey and inform your choices and what steps are needed in terms of qualifications or accreditations.
Once you know your ultimate career goal, you can start to research what’s required: will it require professional memberships or further study? Are your current credentials up to scratch? Will you need to find a way to display other skills, such as managing budgets, leading a team or developing strategies to handle business-critical problems?
It’s also useful to research other companies that operate within your intended field – even if you aim to set up your own company, knowing what’s successful for others, how you can improve on it and what to avoid will help you achieve your career goals. Undertaking regular evaluations of your own progression and goals and reassessing whether your initial plans are still valid should also feature as a large part of your plans.
Starting your progression
The answer of how to be seen as a valued employee is not always ‘work harder’ and promotions don’t always go to those who simply do longer hours. It can be difficult to stand out from the crowd at work – how do you go about proving yourself indispensable and put your chances of promotion ahead of others?
One way would be to study one of the University of York’s online MSc degrees in Leadership & Management, which equips you with business-critical skills such as effective communication, critical approaches to problem-solving and the ability to independently assess progression.
The good news is that as all learning materials are provided 100% online, there’s no need to attend campus; you can study whenever and wherever it suits you, whether that’s evenings, weekends or even during your lunch hour. This lets you stay in your current role while studying and means you can earn while you learn, with the ability to apply what you learn in your current job, improving your working life and proving your value to your employer.
Courses also feature the option to pay-per-module, allowing you to gain a prestigious Russell Group university Masters degree without worrying about large, upfront payments. Best of all, you’ll have access to the world-class knowledge and academics at the University of York, giving you valuable qualifications from a globally respected institute.
While there are a number of options and routes to achieving your ultimate career goal, an MSc in Leadership and Management could bring that goal a few steps closer – and maybe even provide the map for your entire career journey.