It is a well-known fact that taking regular breaks from your work helps improve your productivity. Grabbing a cup of tea and having a chat with your colleagues can also improve the relationships where you work, let you swap ideas, and can generally improve workplace morale. The breaks don’t have to be long – just a few minutes can be enough time for you to reset your batteries and feel ready to get down to some more work. Of course, your breaks may not always involve talking to others, you may, for example, check your social media or have a quick look at a favourite website. But can you make this break time a positive for your career? If you fancy doing a little bit of daily reading, then yes, you can certainly use just ten minutes or so to improve your career prospects every day. Making your break productive is all about how you spend your time, and in this instance, that means reading. So what should you read?
- Your Employer
You can start by reading any messages, newsletters, or even the website of the place where you work. Getting to know what is going on with your employer is a great way to improve your career. It will give you a better knowledge of how your company is doing as a whole, rather than just focusing on the area where you work. This sort of company overview is the stuff that you would need to know as a manager, so by taking it in now you can be preparing yourself for promotion. Plus, if anyone happens to ask your opinion, such as your boss, you will have a better idea what they are talking about. It will not only make you better informed, it will also show your boss that you are a thoughtful and conscientious employee. Of course, as an extension of this, you might also want to follow your company’s social media so you know what sort of messages they are promoting. This knowledge will act as a great addition to any important work skills that you are using or gaining during yoru career.
- Your Area Of Work
Taking time to read a little about your area of work takes things a step further. Once you are up-to-speed with what is going on internally at your work, you can start to look at the industry itself. Whether it is accounting or zoology, you should be able to find some news or information online. This might be advice from others in your field, or even reports on what the competition are doing and if there is a 'skills crisis' that you can take advantage of. There may be legislation that affects your work, or other goings on in the news to look into. All of this knowledge can only improve your understanding and ability to do your job and mark you out as someone who could go places.
- The World At Large
Looking outside your immediate employer or field of work, it never hurts to be up on current affairs. Knowing what is going on with the world will make it easier for you to join in conversations at work. If you have ever sat there while others were discussing something that you knew very little or nothing about, you will understand how important this is. Imagine if your boss decided to ask you about something in the news and you were able to come back with a considered reply – surely that would only help impress them?
Reading is just one way in which you can improve yourself or your knowledge of your chosen career. You may perhaps like to also try subscribing to relevant or informative podcasts (they’re free!), or check out videos such as the always-inspiring Ted Talks that are released most week-days.
Staying clued-up and engaging your brain won’t just help your career, it will also help you to grow too.