Have you ever heard the phrase, “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know?” The phrase is misleading and it’s not an either or proposition. It’s both. The need to obtain credentials and maintain continuous education has never been more important. There are two reasons for this. First, if you want to stay relevant you have to stay in the know – which means becoming and staying fluent in the information technology world. We’re not suggesting that you go out and become an IT coder, unless that’s what you want. What’s important is to understand how technology is impacting the field in which you work. You may even want to take the initiative and enroll in a series of classes that teach you about the technologies, which are relevant to you.
And just when you get that base line of information, it will change and grow again. The key is to be a constant and life long learner. The more information you have, the more valuable you will be to your employer and the less likely it is that you will become irrelevant as time goes on.
The second reason is that according to the Bureau of Labor Statistic/U.S. Department of Labor the ratio of employed persons to jobs openings was 1.5 in August 2015. The good news, you have a one in two chance of getting a job statistically. Of course, this number does not account for industry employment rates or those who are partially employed or no longer looking for work. But to put this number in context, in July 2009, there was 6.8 unemployed persons per job opening. So while your odds are better on paper, you’ve still got to have that “get up and go” attitude if you are going to make it in the long-term. There will always be someone out there that is willing to go the extra mile to get or keep the job that you want. Be that person first.
So you are working towards or have obtained a degree or vocational training certificate. You are gearing up to climb the corporate ladder, start your own business or navigate the first few years or your chosen career. Work hard. Show up on time. Be helpful. Go the extra mile and make a point to expand your network. Your long-term connections will be key to your success. People will remember someone who consistently did a good job and helped out where he/she could.
You always want to leave a situation better than you found it. It sounds cliché, but it’s certainly a guiding principle that CPI employees live by. And don’t discount sincerity. The modern world has a propensity to propagate negative behaviors. The advent of technology has made us all busier than ever and once removed from the people around us – so emails go unreturned and phone messages go left unanswered or ignored altogther. Be that person who returns an email, even if you don’t think you have the time. Send a hand written thank you note after your meeting or sales call. Be genuine. Stand out. Repeat. And then repeat again. And so on… Your career will be made up of the small choices you make – to attend that local networking event you’re too tired to manage; to take a night class to expand your knowledge base when you’d rather be home watching sports or to extend yourself with a genuine act of kindness, even if you have nothing to gain.