Invest in yourself

Standard Chartered Bank

When talking about investment, we immediately associate the word with money or how to generate more of it.

The concepts around investment are multi-faceted and encompass different levels of complexities.

It can be very simple whereby you simply deposit money in a bank and earn interest or it can be complex whereby you begin to take a view on foreign currency, international markets, political climate and even future global developments.

But while we are all familiar with how to make money from our hard earned wages, not many may be familiar with the idea of adding more value to ourselves.

We were always told by our parents and elders to study hard to get good results with the final accomplishment of getting a good job.

Our parents invested in us by sending us to school and paying our tuition fees.

While some may think this is calculated, our parents invested in our education so that we could have a brighter future.

Now that we’ve all grown up, finished our studies and started work, do we consider the investment completed? Do we then therefore expect some sort of return on investment (ROI)?

As gainfully employed persons, we expect to command a certain scale of salary for what we deem are the pre-requisites for it. If you have a diploma, you would expect a certain salary scale and if you have a university degree then you would expect more and this could probably be considered your ROI for your education.

Now that you’ve started work, you may still want to consider adding value to yourself to continue demanding salary increments or promotions. This is where investing in yourself comes in to play.

And just like the usual notion of investment, this too can be complex.

BECOMING AN EXPERT

Being competent ensures job securities. But being an expert in a particular job sheds a whole different light to your value. Increase the level of expertise takes more than just the will to do the job.

It requires passion. A teacher regurgitating content from a textbook as opposed to one who finds creative methods to facilitate learning and understanding students’ different learning styles while inspiring them is a far different thing altogether. The results speak for itself and an inspiring teacher would be more valuable.

KEEPING YOURSELF UP TO DATE

The world changes at an ever increasing speed and if you don’t make efforts to stay up to date with technology, skills and industry developments, you could get left behind and become a relic.

While technology may not be too hard to grasp considering we are surrounded by it, skills can change.

Some external corporate training companies offer various courses for different industries and while it may cost to attend, it is an investment in yourself.

ADD VALUE TO YOUR PORTFOLIO

Once in a while, review your career accomplishments and create a laundry list of your accomplishments to impress a future employer.

In this list, did you develop new skills which resulted in your accomplishment? Factors such as these add greater value for you and your career and would help you stand out.

If you find that you are lacking, it may be time for you to volunteer for a project at work to add value to your role. Bear in mind that these accomplishments must be backed up with facts, numbers or deadlines and it would be more valuable if you can translate your accomplishments into actual results. Do not be tempted to over embellish.

Unless it is irrelevant to your line of work, do not pass over opportunities to improve yourself and add value to your career.

Whatever your investment, believe in it and do something you enjoy and can look forward to every day.

If you are going to invest 30 years of your life into a career, make sure it’s something you will enjoy.

This article is for general information purposes only and while the information in it is believed to be reliable, it has not been independently verified by us. You are advised to exercise your own independent judgement with the contents in this article.