With economic uncertainty and the ever-increasing competitive job market, it's not uncommon for job seekers to take a job that isn't in their target industry.

Although it's tough to stay happy at a job you don't necessarily want, that doesn't mean there isn't an opportunity to grow professionally.


No matter what profession you work, the more effort you put into advancing your skills, the better your chances are of growing into your role, or setting yourself for an opportunity in your desired industry.

If you're worried you might not be getting the experience you need, here are three ways to keep fortifying your professional talents.

Actively Seek Ways To Use Your Skills At Work

Young professional uses her writing skills at her job.

Whether you're a writer working in sales or a business major working at a bank, there's always some way of using the skills you've studied and practiced—wherever you go. You just have to actively seek it out.

For instance, if you're looking to be a reporter someday, but your current job involves office administration, find a way to make up writing projects to help strengthen your craft. Perhaps you could write a summary of the company on the company website, blog about the company, or even try to connect with other vendors via social media.

There are always ways to hone the skills you've already gained to add value to your current workplace.

Ask The Boss To Give You More Responsibilities

Employee talks to her bosses about taking on more job responsibility.

Taking on tougher tasks will help challenge you in the work field, and asking your employer for more responsibilities shows that you're not afraid of a challenge. It also helps you stand out from the other employees in all the right ways.

It's a win-win: you get to put your skills into practice and your employer has less work to think about. Besides, even if your current job isn't in your professional industry, not excelling at a job doesn't exactly make you look like a professional.

Start A Blog And Utilize Social Media

Young professional uses social media to help advance his career.

Even if you're not into blogging, tweeting, or posting on other people's walls, learning how to market your company will help you learn more about who you're working for. The more you know about your employer's business, the easier it will be for you to figure out how you can continue to be a valuable asset to that company.

In addition, this shows additional initiative. Employers love employees that are always offering new ideas that can save or make the company money. The more you contribute, the more you make yourself an indispensable employee.

From all these efforts, you may end up growing fond of the job you're working. And even if you don't, you're making legitimate attempts to grow professionally, and gaining valuable experience and skills that will eventually help you land your dream job.


Looking for more great advice?

Join our career growth club today and get access to one-on-one career coaching, resume and cover letter reviews, online tutorials, and unlimited networking opportunities—all in your back pocket!

Check out our FREE resources page and Live Events Calendar.

This post was originally published at an earlier date.