I did many things to prepare for my dream career, and they were not all online. I mentioned in a past post I upgraded my wardrobe. No, I did not buy a brand-new wardrobe in one day. I did it paycheck by paycheck. Remember it took me four months to get hired, so I had time.

Here are some other things I did.

Attend networking events. Set a goal for how many professional events you want to attend in the coming month or over the next year. Show up with an agenda for what you’re looking to accomplish whether it’s meeting new clients or learning about recent industry changes. I also recommend attending the networking events of the professional organizations you belong to. If you don’t belong to any, what are you waiting for? Start researching your desired industry for professional organizations today.

Update your look. When was the last time you tried a new hairstyle? New clothes? Book an appointment at the salon or visit a makeup counter for some new tips. Go shopping for new items each week, and slowly build a new wardrobe.

Rehearse your elevator pitch. Introduce yourself in a way that makes others eager to learn more. Come up with a memorable statement about what you do and who you do it for. Here is mine:

My name is Marla J. Albertie and I own a multi-media company which provides coaching resources for the 9-5 working woman. I am a certified career, life, and executive coach and trainer, I also work a 9-5 job doing similar work, but not in the same field. 

Volunteer in your community. I am an active member of the Junior League, and I volunteer at other events as well. Helping others can be good for your career prospects. Organize a car wash to raise money for your children’s school or join a group that cleans up local parks. You’ll make new contacts and add to your experience. 

Develop a side job. If you know me, I am a fan of the “side-hustle.” I think everyone should have one. Sell your handmade crafts at a neighborhood boutique or offer logo design services to small businesses. Your hobby could provide income while you build up your portfolio.

Cultivate career coaches. Consider what you need and how you are going to get there. You may need some direction; career coaches can do just that. Guidance from others provides the information and encouragement you need to leverage your strengths. 

Return to the office on Monday knowing that you’ve enhanced your credentials and prepared yourself to take on greater challenges and responsibilities. Building your brand, strengthening your relationships, and learning new information will help you to map out your career path and move ahead.

Which of the six items are you going to take action on today?

Let me know your thoughts