The dead-end job is something that all career-minded people should fear. It’s the job that offers no prospects and nothing but an income for exchange for time that can be spent much more valuably. Whether you’ve found yourself in a job without mobility or your career has ended putting you in a position that you can’t climb from, it’s time to look at how to find another route or bust right through that dead-end.
There may not be any obvious ways up on your current career trajectory, but sometimes the path is a little less obvious than a straight line. A lateral career move is one that has you moving to a role of similar responsibility, pay, and perhaps even workload. However, while a job in one department may have no progression ahead of it, the same job in a different department could offer a lot more opportunity. This could help you find that essential upward mobility under your current employer. If it doesn’t, start courting other employers for roles that are similar to your own. It’s a slightly longer route to that career growth you need, but it’s better than simply sticking where you are right now.
Invest in Yourself
One of the reasons that there is no road ahead of you is because your skills simply can’t take you much further. At least, that’s how employers may see you, even if it’s not true. If your resume hasn’t changed at all in the past year, it’s time to look at more training and employment. For example, take a career in law enforcement. Experience can help you climb a lot, but for higher positions like the director of a police department, you need the formal education of public safety courses and the certification that comes with it. Even if you consider on-the-job experience as more valuable, there’s nothing like the allure of education on a resume to give your career some legs.
Start Your Own Business
You don’t have to play by the rules of an employer, either. Many people are in jobs where they could be doing exactly the same thing but under their own employ. For instance, working in copywriting or as a social media manager in one company might not pay as well as becoming a consultant or freelancing for several other companies. Look at making the switch from employee to employer. Your role and expertise might not change as much, but the availability of a larger market can help you sell those skills for a lot more money. As your client list grows, you can perhaps even start hiring others to take on the practical side of the work while you focus more on developing and growing a business.
You should always keep an eye out for the signs that you’ve ended up in a dead-end job. If your skills feel like they’re going to waste, that your boss doesn’t care about your goals, or that your work remains the same from month to month, it’s time to start looking at other options.