Invest in your future: top tips for 2023

With the UK and other major economies around the world facing a cost-of-living crisis and projected recession, now’s a good time to invest some attention in your career planning, writes Obelisk Support Talent Director, Laura Vosper.

Tune in to our top ten tips and make sure you’re in good shape for 2023.

1. SWOT your practice area

The Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats matrix is a tool strategists use to evaluate the health of a company or market sector. Applying this to your practice area or sector specialism can help you think about where there might be growth and/or challenges ahead and prepare accordingly.

2. Invest time in your network

After a year and a half of pandemic, in-person events are back in earnest this Autumn. If you’ve got used to working at home, make the effort to spend some time at either industry parties or conferences and expand your professional connections or re-connect with people that you’ve missed over the past couple of years.

3. Commit to ongoing learning 

Give yourself a quick learning MOT. When was the last time you invested some time and or money in learning new skills? Whether it’s keeping up with developments in your practice area or picking up new skills outside of legal, such as project management, change management or negotiation, boosting your expertise is vital to help you stand out.

4. Check your sponsors

If you’re currently in a full-time role, make sure you know who your sponsors at work are and that your connection is as strong as you think. Remember, a sponsor is someone who speaks up for you when you’re not in the room, so they are vital to securing new opportunities if there are planned restructures in your organisation.

5. Branch out 

If a current assignment comes to an end sooner than you were expecting, or you find yourself facing redundancy, take the opportunity to use the flexibility consulting offers to try working in a new area or company. A six-month engagement can be a great way to start a whole new chapter of your working life.

6. Build your buffer

If you’re able to, now is a good time to stash away some extra savings and try to build a “six-month emergency fund”, just in case plans change unexpectedly over the coming year. Having a financial buffer takes the pressure off if you do find yourself with a longer than expected break between jobs.

7. Smarten up your CV

Now is a good time to make sure that your CV is up to date and to highlight key achievements. Take some time to think about what makes you special as a lawyer and how you would evidence this to your next hirer. If you’re currently in a role, it’s a great opportunity to build up some examples of fresh projects that you can share to showcase your expertise.

Find our tips for creating a killer CV here.

8. …and learn to love LinkedIn

Even if it doesn’t come naturally, starting to post more on LinkedIn and making sure your profile is interesting is essential. Use an interesting picture as part of your profile page, make sure you call out some of your key interests and experience at the top of your profile and, if you can, try to share a post every couple of weeks as a minimum.

Find more tips for mastering LinkedIn here .

9. Understand your options

If you find yourself facing redundancy or a project coming to an early close, don’t panic. The good news is that there is still lots of demand for legal talent. Keep an open mind and consider consulting and permanent opportunities.

Working through a provider like Obelisk Support means that you can benefit from tailored advice as you secure your next engagement, with no need to worry about setting up insurance, billing your clients or business development. Mixing consulting work with permanent opportunities gives you extra exposure to a variety of working environments that can bolster your CV and help you stand out when meeting new employers.

Contact our team today to discuss how we can support your flexible working journey today.

10. Look after your mental health

It’s important to counter the general air of uncertainty by finding the activities that help you de-stress and nurture yourself. Whether it’s exercise, meditation, journaling or escaping from the world into a good book, set aside some time to get away from it all, so that you can boost your resilience and be ready for any changes ahead.

Read our guide for the lawyer and paralegals healthy working career here.

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