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by Contributor

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(Nov. 11, 2019) — Landing a career in your chosen field is not only a relief but it is hugely satisfying to know what you have been working for has been achieved. And while that job may be rewarding, challenging, and everything you hoped it would be at first, over time it’s quite natural to want to move up the ranks and hit that next level of success. Success is defined as many different things, whether it be the job title you have, the responsibilities you are given, or the salary it brings in; your version of success is sure to be unique. But chances are it includes taking your career to the next level.

If it’s operations management that you are in, you’re used to juggling a number of tasks and responsibilities at once. So, what do you need to do in order to stand out and truly take your career to the next level of success? Here are a number of tips that can help you out.

Get Your Degree

For those lucky enough to land in the field without any sort of schooling, education, or degree, then this is the perfect opportunity to head back to school.

Obtaining your operations management degree means you’ll learn all the foundations and basics that are necessary to perform your job effectively; study such important topics as financial management, marketing management, logistics, leadership, and more; and of course, demand a higher salary once you’ve got your degree. That degree can make it possible to work as a senior risk manager, with an annual salary of $126,000, or an operations senior analyst with a salary of $117,000.

What makes this a realistic and attainable tip is the fact you can enroll in online operations management degrees, such as the one through Kettering University, that have flexible schedules and don’t require you to ever visit a campus. Everything can be done from home so essentially you could continue working in the meantime.

Work On the Personality Traits that Aid the Career

There are a number of personality traits that a person can have that can really help them not only do a decent job as an operations manager but help them to excel in the position. This can be an opportunity for you to do a little self-reflection and ask yourself if there are any traits you could really beef up and make stronger.

Operation managers are known for being excellent planners. They have an eye for detail, are extremely organized, and don’t have a problem laying out a whole list of steps and parts of a project.

They also need to use common sense and critical-thinking skills in conjunction with one another. There are bound to be issues and challenges that pop up, so you need to be able to think quickly and react in a logical manner.

You will also need to excel in communication skills. Most people think of communication skills as their ability to speak to others in a clear manner, but listening is just as important. Communication is always a two-way street, and you need to be just as good at speaking as you are at listening to others.

Then there are leadership skills. There’s a good chance you will be leading a team, so that means you need to appear confident, informed, and professional at all times. As a leader, it will also be up to you to inspire your team, offer them help and support when needed, and of course, encouragement. It’s up to you to get the best out of them.

Finally, there is the need to be calm even in a high-pressure situation. You can’t be the type who gets ruffled easily, regardless of how many projects and moving pieces there are at any one time.

It’s Up to You to Find Efficient Answers

Another way to take your career to the next level is to stand out where job performance is concerned. As an operations manager, your goal is to make sure everything is being done in the most efficient manner possible. This means bringing down costs and expenses, eliminating waste, getting rid of practices that are redundant, and streamlining processes just to name a few.

You need to be able to show your employer that you are making a difference in the operations of the company, and increasing efficiency is usually the best way to do that.

If you’re having a hard time finding places where you can create better efficiency, it may be time to question the data you are collecting. A key to performing your job properly is that you need to have accurate and essential data that you can analyze. Anything that you can measure can essentially be improved, so make sure your data collection is giving you the full picture.

Speak to Your Employer About Your Career Goals

Sometimes it’s not a matter of needing more experience, schooling or brushing up on your skill-set, rather it is about making your goals clear to your employer. Your employer may be under the impression that you are perfectly happy in your current job. They may not realize you’re looking for a way to take your career to the next level.

A wise tip is to schedule a meeting with your employer and discuss what your ultimate career goals are, and where you want to be in the company in the future. You can then ask them for advice on what you can do to get there, what improvements can be made, what areas you can focus on, and maybe any extra responsibilities or tasks you can take on to challenge yourself and learn from them.

Moving Up the Career Ladder Takes Initiative

While it would be great if a job promotion would just fall into your lap without any effort on your part, the fact is that just isn’t the case. Taking your operations management career to the next level and moving up the career ladder will involve taking the initiative, putting in the work, and staying dedicated to your goal.

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