A rewarding and sustainable career in public safety is what you are aiming to achieve. Whether you have been in your current role for a few months or a few years, there is always the time and the opportunity for growth and development. Advancing your career, reaching your goals and achieving your ambitions will give you a sense of personal satisfaction, and it will give you a sense of career satisfaction too. So, now that you know you want to advance your career, you have to decide what to focus on first. Targeting and focusing our efforts will get you the best results.
Establish Where You Are Currently
Firstly, in this process, you must currently evaluate where you are and how long you have been there. For example, if you are working within law enforcement, and you are a police officer – how long have you been in the role, and have you experienced any progression (voluntary or targeted). When you can establish your starting point, you can then start planning and pushing forwards. If you do not know where you are starting from, you will end up without purpose and direction.
The mindset that you have matters. If your mindset is not focused or targeted on growth and development, then you will struggle to advance your career, no matter how many moves you take. To get the career that you want, you must focus on a better mindset, focus on improving yourself and focus on growing as an individual and as a professional. When you have a stronger mindset that is adapted to success, you will find that results are much more attainable and achievable. If you are struggling with shifting your mindset, try and think about what is holding you back and stopping you from progressing.
What Have You Got to Offer?
What can you offer to future roles and opportunities? It is an important question that needs to be answered as soon as possible. When you know what you can offer, you then know where your true potential lies. If you do not know what you can offer or bring to a role, or even to a department, then how can you prove your worth? Take some time out to establish and even write down what you have achieved in your career so far, then think about how this can relate to what you want to achieve in the future. Sometimes, you can easily put yourself down or overlook the successes and wins you have had, and this can end up negatively impacting what you do and what you want to do.
Start Setting Goals and Objectives
Career goals and objectives are crucial when advancing your career. Having small and attainable goals in place, as well as long term objectives is essential for your personal and professional growth. When you are setting goals and objectives, you need to look at where you want to be in the next few years and then work backwards. For example, if you want to be in a leadership role but you are currently working in an office, then what changes must you make and what moves must you undertake?
Build Your Skillset
Your experience will count for a lot when you are advancing your career but so will your skillset. The skills that you can bring to a role will define you as a professional. So, what skills do you have that you are proud of and what skills are lacking and in need of improvement? Are you great at leadership but perhaps poor at delegation? Soft skills like communication and delegation are things that you can work on in your current place of work. Hard skills such as qualifications will also need to be focused on.
Enhance Your Education
Your education is a hard skill that you will need to focus on. When you enhance and advance your education, you strengthen your approach. You cannot expect to advance and progress in your career without focusing on enhancing your education. For instance, if you are seeking a leadership role, you may look at completing an mps online as this will deepen your knowledge and understanding of what public safety is, and just how much of an impact it has on everyday people, and everyday lives.
Focus on Professional Development
As well as focusing on advancing and enhancing your education, you must also look at continued professional development. Within your industry and area of service, rules, legislation and policies will change and improvements in safeguarding will be introduced. To stay on top of all of this, you will need to embrace professional development learning and opportunities wherever you can.
Look at Networking
Liaising with other professionals and building new working relationships are important to your growth and advancement. When you reach out to other professionals (and you focus on networking) you build links with others who may well benedict your career. You potentially open new job opportunities too. When you are networking, it is important to focus on consistency. Establish what you want to get out of networking and establish how frequency you want to attend networking events.
Undergo Self-Evaluation Regularly
Quite often you can improve yourself by undergoing a regular process of self-evaluation. Regularly evaluating what you are doing, and which direction you are going in is important. When you can regularly undergo self-evaluation, you can then see room for improvement. Quickly spotting room for improvement is important, and the earlier you see where improvement is needed, the sooner change can be made.
Seek a Mentor
You do not have to feel alone when you are looking at advancing your career. Reaching out to a mentor can be beneficial to you and to your career too. A mentor will have seen a lot and experienced a lot within your area of work too. Taking advantage of this knowledge and experience is important and it could help you get into the role that you desire.