Top Tips For A Successful Career in Telecoms and IT
Learn more about careers in wireless communications and mobile telecoms industry. The 12 points below apply to all kinds of jobs in organisations that recruit positions in Sales Management, Hardware Engineering, Wireless Software Engineering, Telecoms Systems Engineering and Telecommunications Marketing Management, whether it be Product Management, Channel Management, or Marketing Communications.
- YOUR CAREER IS A VALUABLE ASSET: You should consider your career as your most important financial asset. Nurture it and develop it. DON’T abuse it or take it for granted. If you do, you are already on a slippery slope and you will inevitably start to create problems for yourself.
- NEVER STOP LEARNING: Take on something new that will enhance your career long term, or help you be better at the job you currently do, or want to do. If you keep up with changes by keeping your skill sets relevant, you will make yourself less vulnerable, should a period of downsizing or consolidation arrives.
- SUPPORT: You need the support of those around you in the workplace and at home. Don’t take for it granted, especially the support of your boss and colleagues, who are likely to be less loyal to you than your spouse or partner. Support has to be won and maintained. Try to analyse over a period whether key staff and your boss are treating you with more or less respect, and above all listen – how do people talk to you? Do they talk openly? Do they avoid answering pertinent questions and avoid eye contact? People can say as much by what they don’t say, as by what they do. These elements, when put together can be a good barometer of how well you are doing in the relationship stakes.
- POLITICS: Most people dislike politics in the workplace, but it is a natural occurrence whenever people are brought together – people get to know one another, form favourite groups and playing your part in these group dynamics is essential for success in any medium or large organisation. Politics is often highlighted as the reason why people become unhappy at work and either leave, or eventually lose out to someone else more popular when that important job promotion opportunity arises. Therefore, networking and getting on with colleagues in the workplace is just as important as keeping your skills sets up to date and relevant.
- SUCCESS NEEDS TO BE ACKNOWLEDGED: We all need our successes to be acknowledged. Make sure people around you get to know your successes. Use the appropriate channels within your organisation to achieve this – don’t be shy, but be measured and avoid creating enemies by bragging inappropriately. If you have a boss that strongly supports you, this is often a good place to start. And remember, like many other things in life, timing can be crucial.
- A NEW BOSS CAN OFTEN MEAN A CHANGE OF JOB: In many instances, a new boss heralds a change in business strategy. The new boss has probably been brought into the organisation to do something different, or meet a new challenge. Redundancies can occur due to a new boss re-structuring, or changing the roles that staffs currently have, in order to re-align the business with the opportunity. You need to quickly assess whether the new way of working will be acceptable to you. If your position or responsibilities have changed, assess whether your skill sets are still relevant and either fully support your new boss and all the changes, or find something else within the organisation, or leave altogether.
- LEARN FROM YOUR MISTAKES: Yes, believe it or not, we are human and mistakes get made, whether in your previous job or current job. Was it a business relationship that went sour, which ended up costing you? Or was it strategic or tactical error in the development of a plan? What ever it was, be honest with yourself. Take time to analyse what went wrong and why. Make sure you learn from it, so you don’t repeat it.
- NETWORKING: Constantly widen your personal network of useful contacts while you are in work, so when you are looking for a new job you will have some useful allies. Many jobs are filled through personal recommendation. Managers like to recruit those who can be recommended by someone they know and whose opinion they value – this takes a lot of risk out of the recruitment process for the hiring manager.
- WORK ON YOUR SELF IMAGE: Always look professional, be one time for work and for meetings, speak clearly and concisely, be polite, friendly and upbeat. Don’t give off a negative aura - you can’t operate effectively - especially in a management position, where you are expected to lead teams, win arguments and debates, be persuasive and carry people with you, if you come across negatively.
- REGULARLY APPRAISE YOURSELF: Be honest with yourself. Have you made progress this year or not? If not, why not? Are you at risk? What would your boss say to you today if you had your appraisal today? What must you do to meet your personal and career goals? Write a plan that enables you to minimise risk and maximise opportunity. Can you deliver, or do you need to go elsewhere? Put down some markers and take a few minutes each week to review what you’re achievements against plan. Decide, can you deliver here, or do you need to move on.
- REMEMBER – YOUR CAREER IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY AND YOURS ONLY: If you have a good boss, you will be encouraged to develop and reach your potential in that job. However, your boss won’t and can’t manage your career. You must think carefully what you want from your career – visualise where you want to be, but be mindful of your own limitations. Now plan how you are going to get there. Taking control of your career will give you a greater sense of purpose and empowerment. Enjoy the journey!
- FINALLY – DON’T FORGET THAT IMPORTANT WORK/LIFE BALANCE: It’s no good having a successful career and fulfilling all your work commitments, if everything else around you, like personal relationships and family life are failing.