8 Steps You Can Take to Advance in Your Career in Singapore

As the world recovers from the economic shocks of the past couple of years Singaporeans are among those who are making adjustments to continue thriving in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, timeworn advice on improving career prospects will likely only take you so far in the years to follow.

If you’re serious about advancing your career in Singapore in 2022 and beyond, check out the ideas and strategies outlined below.

1.) Upskill through SkillsFuture

One great perk of being a Singapore citizen is having access to a variety of skills improvement programmes. SkillsFuture credit courses are one such initiative, offering skills enhancement opportunities for qualified Singaporeans. 

These courses cover a wide range of industries and practices that have been identified as key to local innovation and competitiveness.

This makes taking SkillsFuture credit courses a great way to earn relevant certificates that could be used to advance your career in Singapore.

Additionally, takers of these courses gain access to a wide range of perks and benefits, including traineeships, job placements opportunities, and more.

2.) Join a Startup

The Singapore startup scene is one of the most vibrant in the world, and it is likewise a major source of employment and networking opportunities.

Notably, SMEs and startups together comprise about 99% of local enterprises and employ about 65% of the city state’s workforce, according to official Singaporean government statistics.

Joining a smaller business rather than a government institution or a mega-corporation has a few advantages.

For one thing, it may result in you becoming part of a wider, more robust professional network.

You are also likely to take on more diverse roles in smaller companies, giving you a wider range of expertise.

Together, this may make your resume more attractive to different employers, later on.

3.) Create a Career Plan

As with a business plan, a career plan will help you better contextualize your career path, allowing for realistic and effective goal-setting. To get started, list down your long-term goals and find out what you will need to accomplish to get there.

By doing this simple step, you will better focus your attention on achieving what you want in your career.

To make executing this plan even more focused, write down your career mission and vision statements.

These should serve you much like they would a startup or other business by keeping your professional decisions centred and on-brand.

4.) Find a Mentor

Finding a real mentor to guide you can be a great way to advance faster in your career compared to your peers.

The obvious advantages are that you’ll have someone to teach you the ropes of the business and help you navigate the cultures within the organization as well as the industry at large. 

However, the benefits of mentorship do not stop there.

Having a mentor may also help you quickly expand contacts while providing you with numerous opportunities to improve your confidence and communications skills. These can be as important for career advancement as job competence alone.

5.) Move to a Different Industry

Sometimes, a change of pace and perspective is what you’ll need to make full use of what you already know.

Many innovations are the result of people deciding to choose a different industry from the one they are already familiar with, leveraging their experiences to create something unique.

What’s more, this kind of lateral career move will also likely result in you developing a unique set of skills.

It’s worth pointing out that having an uncommon skill set is quite often a recipe for an attractive CV and resilience in the ever-changing job market.

6.) Keep Updated on News and Current Events

You’ll find that most of the world’s most successful people make time to read. And of the reading materials, they make a habit of reading, it’s most likely to be about news and current events.

This makes sense, as world leaders and business moguls need to have up-to-date information regarding what is happening around the globe.

The stakes for you might be lower, for now.

However, there are plenty of benefits to keeping yourself up-to-date about your industry and external events that may affect it.

Reading regularly broadens your empathy, improves your understanding of things, and sparks creativity—all of which could benefit your career trajectory.

7.) Transition to a Promising Sector

Growing a career in an established industry can subject you to fierce competition and make it difficult to hit your career goals.

For many professionals, the better career option is to transition to a small, less-competitive, but promising industry. 

Singapore is unique in having so many emerging industries within such a small space.

Aside from the more obvious and established ones such as finance, project management and logistics, Singapore also has growing aerospace, healthcare, content development, and manufacturing sectors.

8.) Never Stop Networking

Talents and experience can only go so far if no one knows you have them.

Joining social events and mixers can be a great way to get the recognition your career deserves.

These events can also help you spot new job opportunities and better feel the pulse of your industry.

Start Building Your Career Today

In many ways, developing a career is similar to building a business. You have to make realistic plans, learn to market yourself, build networks conscientiously, and improve your skill sets. 

Thankfully, Singapore offers numerous opportunities for all of these, thanks to forward-looking government initiatives like the SkillsFuture initiative programme.

Singapore also provides plenty of other advantages that arise from its being a global innovation hub.

Regardless of how long you’ve been developing your career, you can rest assured that you’ll always have options available.

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