Seven career habits to master in your 20s

- Worker Happiness

by Sam at Management 3.0

Developing good habits will happen throughout your career, but it’s imperative that you start early. No matter where you are in your career, there will be new things to learn and skills to master, and there is no better place to start than in your early years.

From standing up for your worth to building work relationships that matter, getting solid habits in your arsenal is crucial for long-term success. Learning and growing these seven habits will be a great starting point for a successful and fulfilling career.

#1 Career Habit to Master: Focus on happiness

Happier employees are more productive, engaged, and overall do better work. Making career decisions that you know will make you happy can lead to long-term success, working without happiness in mind can have long-term consequences for your career and your mental health. Make the focus of your career joy, rather than money or success, and that joy will spill into other parts of your life.

#2 Career Habit to Master: Be resilient 

All careers have setbacks. The best way that you can overcome any hardship at work is to become more resilient. You can do this by becoming more adaptable to change and learning from your mistakes rather than dwelling on them. Building resilience is a great way to get noticed and adapt to unexpected changes that can change the course of your career. 

#3 Career Habit to Master: Let go of perfectionism

One of the number one setbacks for young workers can be striving for perfection. Striving for perfection in every little thing can cause unnecessary (and often unpaid) overtime and stress. Remember, not everything you touch has to be the best thing you’ve ever done. Allow yourself the time to get the job done with some added time to unwind. A productive employee is a well-rested one, and future you will thank you. 

#4 Career Habit to Master: Advocate for yourself

Asking for what you deserve can be scary, but this habit is necessary for long-term success. Learn to negotiate your worth and avoid undercutting yourself in an attempt to seem more hireable. Rely on your skillset and stand up for why you deserve what you do. Not only will this help you get to the places you want, but it will help you stand out as a leader and be a go-getter with your team.

#5 Career Habit to Master: Step out of your comfort zone

Start doing the things that make you uncomfortable. It may be easy to get settled into a routine, but one of the best ways you make yourself stand out is to try new things. Continuously pushing yourself to try things may scare you, but it’s one of the best ways to grow and have a competitive advantage. Take a class or a workshop to learn new skills, pitch that crazy business idea, and make moves that show your creativity and drive.

#6 Career Habit to Master: Network, network, network

Networking is one of the most important habits you can pick up in the early years of your career. Whether it be with executives at fortune 500 companies or low-level interns, you never know how an interaction can benefit you down the line. Approach team members with kindness, understanding, and creativity. Best case scenario, you know the right people to help you land your dream job, and worst case, you make good friends along the way.

Photo credit Danielle MacInnes via Unsplash

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