Frequently, you see it on Twitter from people who are already in your desired field. Maybe a mentor said that you have great experience already, but would benefit from learning how a different institution or company structures their office and style. Someone may have mentioned that a degree would help you even more. Or maybe you just love to learn.
If you’re stuck in a rut and feeling as though you’re at a crossroad, here are some of the many options you have to increase your knowledge.
Graduate School / Graduate Assistantship
Often as a graduate assistant, depending on the school, this is a two-year position. You balance a class schedule, which can consist of two-to-three courses in a classroom or online setting each semester that is often in a sports management or business administration program. On top of classes, you are working a full-time position in the office and should expect to help with all home events. Some universities cover tuition, books and have a stipend, and others might offer housing on campus and a meal plan.
If you are looking to sharpen a particular skill, like digital marketing, Photoshop or social media, a certificate is a good option. There are universities that have shortened courses on certain topics for busy professionals that provide overviews on a topic. There are also brand certifications, like Google Adwords or Hootsuite. HubSpot has a large number of certifications that are free. Or if there isn’t much spare change to pay for a certification, there are many free YouTube and Lynda videos available on so many topics.
Social media has been super helpful in being able to communicate with others in the sports world. After engaging in a Twitter chat, maybe slide into the DMs of someone you admire or feel like you can learn from, or find their email to ask for a 15-20 minute chat about the field and where they see it going. You could also ask about their favorite affirmation or an influential book that turned the tide in their career.
What if you want to find out more about programing or yoga or photography? Check out MeetUp. Meet new people in the area that you want to know more about and pick their brain and bring your ideas. They might show you a whole new area to check out that you didn’t even know existed in your city. Plus, it widens your network.
Even if you did a few internships while in undergrad and over the summers, don’t close yourself off to doing one later in your career. Look into picking up another paid internship or trainee position. Set a handful of goals that can help you achieve tasks for your employer and for your career to maximize the impact.
Staying up on the changes in your field, being able to think critically and interacting with those who you look up to is very important. As you’ve noticed, no two people in the workforce have the same path to get to where they currently are in the field. What has worked for one person, may not work for you. Pick a direction that works for you and fits into your career and life goals.