Summary: Want to advance your career without getting a higher-level degree? Find out how in this article.
Question: I am employed in a credit-management field and would like to stay in this field. How can I gain further competency without completing a degree program?
Answer: While a degree is a prerequisite for many positions, alternatives do exist for developing in a career. Depending on your situation, you may wish to try a combination of the following:
- On-the-job training. This is a common approach to building skills. You and your supervisor agree on development goals. Then, you are assigned projects with an experienced colleague or team that trains you while you’re working.
- Certifications through a professional association. Many professional associations provide training. Check with the National Association for Credit Management. The website’s education area shows that there are several possibilities for conferences, certificate programs, and self-study.
- A mentoring relationship. Establishing a relationship with a respected senior person, either within your company or through a professional affiliation, is another way to increase your knowledge. Mentors often are particularly helpful with the less tangible elements of career development, like office politics and organizational effectiveness.
- Self-study. The research and reading you do on your own can provide considerable learning opportunities to supplement your development. This is a recommended approach regardless of your field and educational background.