Having a solid career foundation is important to any working class person in their 20s. And for something that important, sometimes we tend not to put our best foot forward.

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Ignorance, laziness, lack of motivation are obvious factors that can cause stagnancy in our careers.

But what are those unobvious mistakes that may be stunting your career growth?

Here goes…

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  • Not building a personal brand

A lot of young people are sitting comfortably on this table. Some, out of ignorance, others, because they’re too busy with their current jobs, fail to build a personal brand for themselves.

Whatever the case is, one of the career mistakes you’re probably making is this. And why is building a personal brand so important, you may ask? The reason is that having a personal brand sets you apart in the professional world.

  • Working only for money

A lot of people in their 20s are guilty of this. Maybe it’s because of their financial state, or because they don’t know better, but most of the time, young people only work for money and not for what’s equally important — growth.

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Being deliberate about your growth in whatever industry you find yourself in will automatically change the way you approach the career decisions you make.

For instance, learning more, (whether it’s gaining a higher degree, taking online courses, gaining new skills, etc), and networking more are deliberate steps towards professional growth.

  • Not saving or investing

It’s easy to pass up on saving since one is young, hence #YoungWildAndFree. But this isn’t an advisable way to go about one’s career and finances.

Unexpected things happen even to the youngest of persons. Responsibilities may spring up from right, left and centre and all of these things mostly need to be solved with money.

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Hence, the lack of proper savings or investments will make it difficult to gain financial freedom.

  • Staying in a job with no future x Underemployed

It’s fine to take up that job that may not have prospects at the beginning of your career. Not a lot of people get their dream jobs at the start of their careers.

However, you must take deliberate steps to stay on that job for as short as possible, after gaining the required experience.

On the other hand, a job might pay surprisingly well but be careful to evaluate if this company offers you the chance for upward mobility or growth. If it doesn’t, don’t plan to stay on for a long time as well.

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You can set a timeline for yourself and while you’re doing this, apply to other companies offering better opportunities.

  • Not speaking up

It can feel intimidating being a young person at a company — especially if it’s a big one — that you may find it challenging to speak up.

However, this is a recipe for doom in your career. It’s important to build the habit of speaking up early on in your career. This is because airing your opinion is key to unlocking major doors in your career.

For instance, without speaking up, you may remain underpaid for your role and this may make you dissatisfied with your job.

You can start cultivating the habit of speaking up by exercising your communication skills.

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You can practice with your friends and build up your confidence from there. Of course, salary raise isn’t the only advantage one can gain from speaking up.

Expressing your opinions on matters like company policies, company culture, and feedback from your supervisor are some of the advantages of speaking up.



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