Summer is the prime time to get a jumpstart on your career. Work is slower and the days are longer, leaving you with more time to invest in yourself and your development. Whether you’re looking for a new job, working towards a promotion, or happy in your current role, you should always devote time to building your career.
Summer is usually a bit slower for most businesses, which means you have more time to build connections. Reach out to at least one person in your network that you haven’t been in contact with recently and set up a coffee meeting or phone call. Send a catch up email to someone from the last networking event you attended to touch base with them. You don’t always have to have a specific agenda to meet someone. It can be nice to just touch base and stay at the top of someone’s mind.
If you’re looking to change careers, reach out to someone at a company you’d like to work for. Learn about their role, their bosses, and what they like and don’t like about their job. If you’re working towards a promotion, find someone in the role you’re aspiring to. They don’t have to be at your company. Talk to them about how they got their job, and see if they have any recommendations for skills you should learn or ways to position yourself as the right candidate for that role.
In general, reach out to at least one new person every week. If you’re job searching, aim for connecting with five people each week. Remember that you won’t hear back from everyone. It’s not personal – perhaps they’re busy, the email you have isn’t one they use anymore or check often, or your message got lost in the sea of hundreds they receive daily. It’s always good to reach out twice. Wait about a week and then send another message with a friendly response checking to see if they received your previous email.
Learn a new skill.
A foolproof way to move your career forward is by learning. This can be done in a formal way by taking a class, or informally by studying on your own. Taking a group class or workshop is also another great way to expand your network and meet new people. What better time than the summer to learn something new? Take advantage of the slower pace of work and the days it’s too hot to go outside and fill them with something productive.