got-skillsRecession (noun): a widespread decline in the GDP, employment and trade lasting from six months to a year.
This word has been lingering over the world for quite some time now and for a significant percentage of the population, money’s too tight to mention.
It can be hard to find a job, hard to keep a job and seem nigh on impossible to progress within a company once you’re in. But even when times are hard, you can get ahead – by using the time you have wisely. To accelerate career success, there’s a lot you can do to be a positive contributor to your present job – a must to keep your job.
Here are a few ways to be more engaged at your present workplace and enrich your career:


Internal Company Training

Most employers know that one of the greatest investments they can make is their workforce: with the right training, staff will not only be equipped to do their jobs, but motivated and confident enough to get creative.
But if the opportunities for outside training are limited, or you feel you’ve reached an impasse with your career, you can get better at your job, or improve your CV – with internal training. Best of all, it won’t cost your bosses a penny (beyond maybe a day’s productivity).


Seeks Mentors in your Organization

People love to be asked and nothing brings more satisfaction than to be of help to someone. Though it might not be evident there are many people in your present company who could be willing to be a mentor.
Whether you work for a large conglomerate or a small business, you’ve got nothing to lose and everything to gain by seeing how your colleagues function. So, if you work in a managerial role, ask to be included in a meeting with someone higher up to see what’s being discussed, valued and disregarded. Or ask to spend an hour working with the people you manage: you might have worked your way up from a similar role but things change and everyone will handle their job differently.


Diversify your Skills

You can also cross over to different departments: accounts, sales, administration and human retargets are all areas which you might not deal with day-to-day but will still have a huge impact on your day-to-day job! Spending even just a day learning how another department works might give you an insight into your own productivity, and will give you skills you can bring to your sector.
And it’s not only beneficial to you: having more flexible employees means that a company can keep output high and tide things over when staff are otherwise off sick or out of the office. A multi-skilled workforce means impressed clients, confident, informed communication across the board, a better flow of ideas and, hopefully, a greater respect amongst their employees. Once you know how hard John in accounts works all day, chances are you’ll feel better about facilitating his efforts by getting your receipts in on time. Once he knows you’re not just faffing about on a computer all day, he might be more open about answering your e-mails.


Observe and Participate – Be Visible

In-house training isn’t the only route you can take to multi-skilled bliss: if your company employs agencies to work on advertising, promotions or events, ask if you can sit in on meetings or spend a day at their offices to watch how they work. You can get an insight into how they do their jobs, pick up a few tips on how to improve your working relationship with the businesses you collaborate with, and give some feedback to help them do their jobs better. You creating a stronger relationship with your agencies will give your company greater leverage when it comes to renewing contracts, and hopefully make for a more fluid partnership all round.


What are you doing currently to sharpen your skills and making sure you’re not on the layoff list if and when it happens?


This content was brought to you in affiliation with Direct Line Group Careers, which is currently recruiting to fill a range of vacancies in its UK-wide insurance businesses.