published Sunday, September 4th, 2011

How to stand out in a tough market

Whether you are looking for work or working at a job where you want to advance to the next level, staying relevant in the current job market can be a challenge. Here are some top tips from employment insiders about how to create your own brand and stand out.

EDUCATION: If you want to hear “you’re hired” or “you’re promoted” a great place to focus your efforts is on education. Keeping your skills current in your industry is crucial if you want to stand out above other candidates. Getting an advanced degree, taking college classes and other job training can be a big differentiator.

Luckily for the 21st century workforce, attending college isn’t just for those fresh out of high school. With online degrees, flexible scheduling, and more variety of courses than ever before, you can take the exact class to get the skills you need to make a difference in your career.

NETWORKING: Sometimes finding the right job is all about who you know. The best way to increase your networking is to join a professional organization in your industry. Social media is another great channel when expanding networking efforts.

VOLUNTEER: Whether you are currently working or unemployed, volunteering helps keep your skills fresh and shows you’re willing to go the extra mile. Plus you’ll demonstrate your ability to work as part of a team. Volunteering is a great addition to any resume and is also a perfect conversation topic

during an interview.

READ: This advice may sound simplistic, but staying up to date on the news in your industry is crucial. With most industries changing at a rapid pace, being out of the loop for a couple months can mean you’ve fallen behind.

— ARAContent

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