4 Tips for Women Feeling Stuck in Their Careers

Glass ceilings, solidarity marches, and empowerment movements are all over the news today as women take figurative and literal steps to become an even larger force in the United States. Many women have founded fundraising groups, task force committees, and other active organizations in recent weeks, and they are starting to take their quest for empowerment to their careers. If you feel stuck in your career, take some inspiration from these women and do something about it. You may decide to change careers or push for the promotion you know you deserve. Our tips will help you shake up your career.
1. Know Your Strengths
Senior vice president and chief marketing officer of Principal, Beth Brady shares her experience in changing career paths in her Fortune article. She recommends that women who feel stuck should assess your assets and determine whether you have the skills and strengths that will make you competitive in your industry. If you lack them, start devising a plan to get to the next level and include mentors and industry associations as resources and for networking opportunities. Then, put your strengths to use and continue to develop them while you also learn a few new skills.
2. Talk to the Right People
You may be surprised to find that the more you talk to people, the more you find who also feel stuck in their jobs and who aren’t sure what they want to do with their lives even though they have degrees and jobs. Samantha Cole’s Fast Company article dives into advice from career coach Cheryl Palmer, in light of the fact that 15% of American workers detest their job. According to Palmer, informational interviews are networking essentials that provide a path to finding your passion. Women should narrow your options to a few careers, schedule appointments with people in those fields, and talk. You may find that people are willing to help you if you ask, they enjoy that you want to learn about their careers, and they become connections for future endeavors.
3. Consider Internal and External Job Opportunities
One of the best ways to determine whether you are stuck in your career is to make a list of pros and cons about leaving your position and then about leaving your company. Some women realize that they don’t want to leave their company, but they do want to take on a new role within it. Review internal and external job opportunities and determine which ones you qualify for in addition to which ones you would like to earn.
If you would be happy with a promotion, work for it. Talk to your superiors and make a case for yourself. If you have been hesitant to serve on a board or take on more responsibility because you are not sure if your company continues to be a good fit for you, accept the offer and try out your new role for a short time. The experience will help you learn new skills and put your strengths to the test, and it will give you a better idea of whether your current company is the place for you or not.
4. Consider Entrepreneurship
It could be that ultimately you want to be your own boss. The great news is that these days there are many ways to dip your toe into owning your own business without having to give up the security of your current job. For example, you can become a business owner in the sharing economy. Start a side gig as a tasker or virtual assistant. Sharing economy websites make it very easy to set up shop and find clients. Or you might work on the weekends as a tutor or take on some freelance copywriting or graphic design work, if that’s where your talents lie. These may not be the kinds of businesses you’d ultimately like to run, but they’re a great way to learn the ropes of business ownership while you’re still bringing in your day job paycheck.
5. Take Advantage of Your Ability to Choose
In the end, the decision to change your career or change your role in your current company is up to you. You may be your greatest obstacle to a new, exciting career that is more fulfilling and rewarding. Rather, you need to take advantage of your power of choice and do not allow yourself to stay stuck because of fear of the unknown.
You can choose to work with a career coach or mentor to determine your strengths. You can choose the networking opportunities that will work best for you, and you can choose whether to move up in your present company or pursue opportunities outside of your industry. The key is to realize that you don’t need to be stuck or settle for discrimination in your career.  Take charge!