10 Ways to Make the Most of Your Corporate Career

BusinesswomenBy Simon North, Founder of Position Ignition and the Career Ignition Club.

Quite often we don’t appreciate the value of a corporate career until we’ve left it. So what can we do to make the most of it in the here and now?

1.      Know your brand

Corporates enjoy a brand value for a reason. And when you are an employee of a corporate, you can sometimes lose the connection between that brand value and what it is about its products and services that make it successful. If you carry the brand as part of your identity, it is worth understanding its value.

2.      Accentuate the Positive

What makes this corporate good, if not fantastic? Why did you join it? Why did colleagues who’ve joined since you joined join it? What is it that makes you carry on working for it and indeed proud to be part of it today? One of the biggest challenges for organisations currently is what’s called engagement — that relationship that exists between an employee and their employer. Staying with your corporate for good positive reasons is essential to your wellbeing.

3.      Appreciate the infrastructure

Corporate entities need to invest in everything, from property furnishings to technology and so on. These are elements of your working life that you may not have at some point in the future so appreciate them now and understand just how much support is being given to you without you realising.

4.      Mine for Information

Take out the most that you can from your company. For example, a corporate’s internet may well have an enormous amount of useful information that will help you to do your job better: information on the market in which you operate, your products, your services and so on. All of that is available but not always do we utilise them to the extent we could. Only when we leave the organisation do we realise how much there was and how little we used.

5.      Use Your Internal Network

When you arrive in a corporate environment, you join a collegiate group that definitely has value to you both now and into the future. You should build your internal network and nurture it whilst you’re there because there will come a time when you will really want them and want their help.

6.      Use Your Boss

Your boss is your boss for a reason and there is no doubt that you would do good to learn from them. It is not always the obvious port of call for us to seek to use our boss appropriately but if we are mature about it there is plenty we can learn from them.

7.      Find a Mentor

Mentors play a significant role in our lives at different times. Understand what mentors are and how useful they can be and how utilising one now could be of use to you.

8.      Know Your Tribe

Deepen relationships with your tribe. Every one of us will be a member of a tribe. The people in our tribe are those who operate in the same technical domain as we do. A member of our tribe is somebody who understands the value we bring, understands the language of our field and so on. Knowing our tribe and staying connected to that tribe is a prerequisite for successful careers in the long term.

9.      Build Your Reputation

Your reputation is the value that you carry today. That value can go up, it can go down or it can stay the same. You need to be aware that you need to be enhancing your reputation every day in order to move forward. And it’s not just about where you’re currently working but also about where you may want to work in the future.

10.  Exit Well

Leave good relationships behind you. One day you may resign and move on from the corporate. When you do that, you want those who you are leaving to feel that they will always continue to be in touch, may well have you back in some capacity and be delighted by the journey that you have left them for. We cannot take that sort of thing for granted so you have to work for it.

About the author

Simon North is the Founder of Position Ignition, one of the UK’s leading career consultancy companies which created the Career Ignition Club, a leading-edge online careers support and learning platform. Follow him @PosIgnition

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