5 career mistakes that can stunt your professional growth

Making too many blunders at work can eventually lead to you being shown the door. (Rawpixel pic)

Making mistakes at work is inevitable but if the frequency and severity of the mistakes are unacceptable as far as the management is concerned, your reputation will certainly take a beating.

The good news is that mistakes can be remedied if you learn from your experience and avoid repeating them.

If you want to pave the way for a successful career, there are blunders that you must avoid at all costs.

Here are five main career mistakes that could really put a dent on your professional journey.

1. Lack of self-confidence

A lack of self-confidence can stem from unresolved issues at home, at school or at the workplace.

Studies have shown that the behaviour of parents and teachers have the most significant influence on a child’s sense of self, and which in turn forms the foundation of their adulthood.

Individuals with deep insecurities will struggle throughout their careers, simply because self-confidence is an essential part of life.

It is therefore crucial to either be in control or overcome and adapt to your surroundings by keeping your confidence in check, particularly in a professional setting.

Tip: There are a multitude of methods, tips and tricks to boost your self-confidence at home and at work. The simplest is to pick one aspect in your life that can elevate your confidence.

It could be working out at the gym, placing a photo of a loved one on your table or indulging in that amazing cup of coffee to kickstart your day.

Knowing your self-worth will go a long way in preserving your professionalism in the workplace. (Rawpixel pic)

2. Outdated skills

The job market is highly competitive with the number of unemployed outnumbering available jobs.

Most employees however tend to focus on preserving their financial status while overlooking the potential for fine tuning their current skills.

If you are not enhancing your skills to meet industry requirements, it will be exceedingly hard to land yourself a job. Remember, you are also competing with automation and advanced machinery that are replacing human workers.

Tip: It is never too late to learn new skills so you remain relevant in today’s work environment.

3. Mediocrity at work

When you spend the majority of your career in the same role and lack the desire to explore new areas of work, you have fallen into the path of mediocrity.

The workload you struggle with daily plays a big role.

Not everyone is able to manage stress without losing the motivation to climb up the career ladder, which is also the root cause of mediocrity.

Tip: Know your limits and plan your work schedule appropriately. It will help to improve the quality of your daily work.

If you are feeling stuck, take a break or work on a lighter task to reflect and unwind until you are back in shape.

Keep in touch with your professional contacts even after you’ve left a particular job – you’ll never know when you may need them again in the future. (Rawpixel pic)

4. Cutting off professional contacts

Build your network and continue to keep in touch with your professional contacts even after you’ve left a particular job or changed careers altogether.

Most people cut ties with past contacts once they have moved on due to company policies, but if the situation allows it, it’s worth maintaining these connections.

What some may fail to see is the potential for opportunities to complement working together or building a strong string of networks that may be ideal in building your reputation in your current job.

Tip: Stay in touch. Your network of contacts could potentially become your resources. You never know if one of your previous contacts could offer the guidance you need to be successful in your career.

5. Understating your worth

Knowing what you’re capable of can be advantageous when climbing the corporate ladder.

Unfortunately, most people struggle to effectively convey their worth due to a lack of communication and negotiation skills.

Knowing your worth is not enough if you can’t manage expectations right from the start, particularly when negotiating for a job promotion.

You will need to first understand the duties and responsibilities that come with career advancement. Understand that it is not just about a salary increment or additional benefits.

Balancing your personal expectations with that of the organisation is important before you consider proposing yourself for a senior position.

Tip: Make a conscious effort to find out more about the job you’re vying for. It helps to understand how your skills can contribute to the job’s worth.

From this point, you can think about how your salary range can match it. It also helps to understand the company’s perspective of the job and how they value it.

If the job is something worth taking the plunge for, it’s your right to propose what you should receive and can deliver to the organisation before making your move.

This article first appeared in jobstore.com

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