So, you’ve chosen a career in commercial real estate and want to make the most of it. How do you climb that ladder and become the best in your league? How do you ensure career success in your current CRE field?
Regardless of what specialty or focus your career path is in, commercial real estate is a demanding field that requires dedication, commitment, and growth. It is crucial for CRE professionals to be ever-learning, ever-advancing, and ever-evolving for maximum career success and advancement.
Some of these principles hold true for whatever career path you take. Others are especially important in CRE. If you’ve made a commitment to succeed, here are seven tips to help you get the most out of your career.
1. Come Prepared to Learn
Like most professions, working in CRE means learning a variety of skills, information sets, and best practices. But much of what makes you successful now might change in coming years. Therefore, it is imperative that you are prepared to learn on the job, even after you have become well-established in your field.
Continuous learning has been directly tied to success on the job. It enables you to adapt and become multifunctional, engaged, and prepared for the unexpected. In the long run, it positions you to excel in your career and be promoted in time.
2. Cultivate Better Communication
One of the keys to career success in any field is effective business communication. Proactively and effectively communicating with your direct reports and superiors facilitates a more functional workplace and healthier relationships. These in turn directly contribute to your success. Some keys to improving your communication include:
- Use clarity
- Err on the side of over communication
- Be open and honest
- Emphasize a communication culture
3. Achieve Specific Goals
Especially in the world of commercial real estate, you are not paid just to clock in and clock out. Your career advancement hinges on your ability to identify and achieve goals central to your company’s mission. Your employer will recognize your profitability if you focus on achieving these goals, both long term and short term. And your career will benefit from it.
4. Demonstrate Initiative
If you want to actually go places in your career, take initiative. Your growth, adaptability, work relationships, and overall success depend on you. It’s up to you then to demonstrate initiative to succeed in your career. Some ways to do this include:
- Ask for guidance
- Offer help
- Educate yourself
- Be a cost saver
5. Manage Up
When you manage your boss instead of waiting to be managed, you will become far more valuable and likely to succeed in your career. Really impress your boss by getting to know him or her, avoiding office politics, and bringing solutions rather than just problems to the table. When you are detailed and proactive in solving problems for your managers, your career success will be inevitable.
6. Evaluate Yourself
Rather than waiting for your annual evaluation, be your own evaluator! Identify objectives and goals, and then create a task list to achieve them. At the end of each week, fill out a form or work diary to rate your progress on each of these tasks and overall goals.
You might even consider showing these work logs to your supervisors to see if they agree with your real-time self-evaluations. And doing so will also impress upon them your dedication to progressing and improving in your career.
Talk comes cheap. There’s a saying managers used once upon a time: “Show me the baby, don’t tell me about the labor pains.” While this antiquated quip may sound cold, what’s beneath it is an inherent valuation on putting feet to your plans and ideas. When you do what you say, it goes a long way towards building your credibility and long-term prospects for success. When you put in the effort to make real gains, it translates into respect and meaningful contributions at work.
Generating real and tangible career success in CRE has so much more to do with being proactive than being lucky. By following these basic principles and tips, you can climb the ladder and achieve your career goals. It doesn’t matter where you start or what adversity you encounter. You can find fulfillment at work and create the career trajectory you want.
It’s entirely up to you!