If you’re a young woman with ambitious professional goals, you may be wondering how to navigate the workforce, rise above sexism, and blaze your own path. You can find plenty of valuable tips on these topics and more from Times of Rising! Professional women are shattering glass ceilings in every industry, and you’ll have access to more exciting opportunities in the workforce than ever before. Here’s how to launch your very own business, invest in professional development courses, deal with discrimination, find an amazing mentor, and more.
What if you’re getting tired of working for someone else? Or what if you’re a recent graduate who could never see yourself thriving at a 9-to-5 job? Entrepreneurship might be in your future.
Today, it’s easier than ever for women to start their own businesses, and you’ll find that the female entrepreneurial community is highly supportive of new business owners. Starting a business is a lot of work, but creating a detailed business plan can help you map out your next steps. You’ll begin by writing up a clear description of your company, and then write down how you plan to market and sell your products or services. You will also need to note your business structure.
Your business plan should also include some financial information. Take some time to estimate your projected annual income and expenses for your first year in business. Outline a sample budget based on these figures. If you plan to apply for outside funding, assess how much you think you’ll need.
Take Professional Development Courses
It’s easy to assume that your education stops after graduation, but you should continue investing in your professional development long after you receive your diploma. If you’ve gained some experience in a particular field and you want to expand your knowledge in this area, you could benefit from enrolling in a professional development course.
For instance, maybe you’ve gotten familiar with the basics of medical coding, but you’d like to learn more about this subject. You can register for one of the best online medical coding courses for medical billing. In a course like this, you’ll cover material like assigning the right codes, properly identifying medical procedures, and facilitating service claims. Once you’ve finished the coursework, you’ll take an assessment to validate your skills and illustrate your qualifications for future employers.
If you’re currently job hunting, you might be wondering how to find a company where you will feel truly valued. Young women seeking employment should brush up on employer red flags before going to interviews. HerMoney states that unclear job postings, long interview processes, a lack of women in leadership positions, deeply personal interview questions, tests involving unpaid work, and a lack of accommodations for vulnerable employees are all warning signs. If you encounter any of these glaring red flags at a job interview and you’re offered the position, think twice before accepting the offer.
You can network within your current organization and in other settings. From social gatherings to conferences to volunteer shifts, anywhere and everywhere can present opportunities for networking! If you’ve never tried networking before, you might assume that it would be a little bit nerve-wracking – but it doesn’t have to be. With a little practice, networking will come to you naturally. To network effectively, The Undercover Recruiter recommends jotting down a few conversation starters to find common ground with professional connections, offering to help other people in order to establish mutually beneficial relationships, and spending a few minutes on LinkedIn each day to build your network.
Find a Mentor
Everyone can benefit from having a mentor. For young women in the workforce, mentorship is invaluable. Learning from more experienced women in your field can help you figure out your personal goals, deal with challenging situations, emphasize your unique strengths, and climb the professional ladder.
But how can you go about finding a mentor? It can take time to find someone who you click with and trust. BlueSteps recommends looking to other employees in your workplace first and expanding your search outside of your own organization, too. For example, you might find a willing mentor through a professional association, a non-profit, at a conference, or even within your own social circle! When you meet someone in your industry, make it a point to exchange your contact info and stay in touch. You never know who could teach you a valuable lesson.
Set Yourself Up for Promotions
Perhaps you’re working in an entry-level role right now, but you have your sights set on a higher title. You want to make sure that you’re first in line for any upcoming promotions so that you can continue moving up within your company. Establish yourself as an employee who is willing to go above and beyond for your team. Communicate your future goals to your manager, be willing to collaborate, and learn skills that will make you irreplaceable within your department. Don’t be afraid to step into leadership roles on projects when you have the chance!
What if you’re passed over for a promotion that you knew you were qualified for? Make sure to update your resume with any recent accomplishments, and then start sending it out to other companies with openings for similar positions. Sometimes, strategic job hopping is the best way to advance in your career!
Earn Respect as a Leader
When you’re managing a team or project, and people are looking to you for guidance, it’s important to demonstrate your leadership qualities. Make sure to handle disagreements respectfully, foster consensus amongst your team, acknowledge your team members for their contributions and deal with criticism graciously.
Dealing With Discrimination
Even the most intelligent, successful, hard-working women will occasionally deal with discrimination in the workforce. How can you cope with situations like this? Remember, sexism in the workplace is never your fault. When you’re faced with derogatory remarks or unfair treatment, take the issue to human resources and report it to the appropriate managers. You may also want to tell a trusted coworker if you need some support. It’s important to deal with these issues right away so that the problem doesn’t fester.
Young women in the workforce may have to face obstacles on their journeys to professional success. But you do not have to let these potential pitfalls hold you back in your career. With these tips, you’ll be able to deepen your knowledge within your field, explore entrepreneurship, become a strong candidate for promotions, and establish yourself as a respected leader in your workplace.
Looking for more career and lifestyle tips? Turn to Times of Rising! Browse our website today for informative articles on professional development and more.