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4 ways to advance your business career in 2021

By LLM Reporters on 8th January 2021

If you are looking to boost your income in 2021 and finally achieve those financial goals then you’re not alone – and, if you’re a stranger to the world of business, this might be the year to make a change. The business world knows no bounds, and opportunities are plentiful when you become the CEO of your own successful enterprise. However, when you are starting out in business or if you’ve hit a tough spot, it can feel like you are drowning and that all your hard work will never pay off, so how exactly do you make it to the top and set up yourself and your family for a long and prosperous future?

We all know that business can be risky, but the potential rewards can far outweigh the perils, motivating entrepreneurs to think big and shoot for the moon. Play your cards right, and you could soon be enjoying the fruits of a lucrative new venture, but where exactly should you start?

Going in blind is never a good idea, and it pays to educate yourself thoroughly and devise a plan for your endeavours before going ahead and diving in head first. In an increasingly tough economic climate as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, it is more important than ever to be realistic when striving towards your business goals and be aware of exactly what you’re getting yourself into, rather than muddling through and hoping for the best, which is never a wise approach.

Regardless of the situation, there are certain factors that should be considered if you want to set yourself apart from the competition and advance your business career, and to ensure you set off on the road to success.

Education

We’ve all heard tales of those self-made individuals whom have risen to the lofty heights of fortune from nothing, and are now multimillion-dollar enterprise owners living the life of their dreams. The truth is, however, that for every one of those inspirational success stories, there are likely to be about a thousand more budding entrepreneurs who tried and failed.

Being a success in business doesn’t necessarily require formal education. Some people learn simply by observing those who have gone before them, and it’s a strategy that has proven to be very fruitful for many.

That being said, if you do happen to have a formal education then it certainly won’t do you any harm, especially in this increasingly competitive climate where the more knowledge and skill you have, the better. Much of what it takes to run a successful enterprise is learned on the job rather than in the classroom, but completing a recognised academic qualification like an MBA will stand you in good stead when it comes to being acknowledged by other prominent players in your field.

Set goals and establish a project timeline

Setting goals is crucial in business, and doing so can play a major role in helping to advance your business career. However, goals without deadlines are pointless.

If you fail to establish a realistic timeline, you’ll be unlikely to achieve business success. Having a set timeline will keep you accountable and ensure you remain on track when it comes to achieving your long-term goals, ensuring that you are always moving forward at any given point, and directing your energy into the right place.

Many successful business people suggest having a career roadmap for your long-term goals, whereby your biggest goals are whittled down into smaller milestones. Look at these as more manageable stepping stones you need to take to reach the next level in your business pursuits.

Ask yourself questions such as: “Are there any skills I can learn that will help me get to where I want to be?” or “Do I have any business contacts I could work with on this project?”. Taking the time to critically analyse your situation will tell you if your goals and timeline are realistic.

Go digital

Image credit: Chinnapong/Bigstock.com

We live in a digital age – and never has this been more apparent than during the Covid-19 pandemic, where businesses with a strong digital presence have truly flourished while others have floundered and failed. With this in mind, investing in your company’s technological infrastructure will be paramount to your long-term success, and is a vital consideration that must not be overlooked.

For starters, you’ll want to make sure that your website is user-friendly, and hire a skilled developer to create an app if it’s something that could benefit your enterprise. Invest in creating a strong presence for your business on social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter – and, if you’re a B2B enterprise, don’t miss the opportunity to make valuable connections on Linkedin. These platforms are great ways to reach out to a broader global audience and offer unrivalled opportunities when it comes to growing your customer base. Best of all? While you certainly can allocate budget for targeted advertising to ensure you’re reaching just the right people, most of it can be done for free.

Never stop networking

Finally, you can never underestimate the importance of having a good network of contacts when it comes to growing your business, so ensure that you are putting yourself out there for the best chance of long-term success. Some of the biggest new business contracts in history have been agreed in the strangest of places, so always be ready to talk openly about your enterprise and keep a stash of business cards to hand out when out at meetings and events. You never know who you might come across, or how it might change the trajectory of your business for the better.

Be pro-active when it comes to following up on meetings or asking for favours. As the saying goes, if you don’t ask then you don’t get, people are often willing to help one another out in the world of business, especially if the venture is of interest to them because they are also hoping the business relationship will be fruitful in the long term. Don’t be afraid to strike up a conversation because you never know where it might lead you.

The bottom line

Advancing your business career in 2021 is going to require hard work and consistency, but make the right moves now, and your life could well be transformed by this time next year. The world is evolving at a rapid rate, so if you want to keep pace with the competition, and, ideally, overtake them, you’ll need to invest time and effort into learning on a number of different levels. A true entrepreneur never takes their eye off the ball, so you’ll have to take every opportunity to make a pitch, since you never know where you’ll find your next great business contact or client.

With twelve months to go, there is still plenty of time left to make this your year – and what better time to get started? Whether it’s early retirement you’re chasing or a more luxurious lifestyle all round, taking the leap is all that’s required to get the ball rolling.