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Five Skills You Should Obtain to Advance Your Career in 2013

With every new year comes a host of new challenges. In the financial sector, those challenges include an evolving job market and a growing number of people who are fighting for every job.

What can a job seeker do to stand out? What skills can he or she obtain to become a stronger candidate?

To find out, StreetID turned to Billhighway’s Brenda Gallick.

“I would say the five skills that we think would be to advance your career would, [first], be client-focused,” said Gallick, who specializes in Team Member Success. “And that’s not just external clients but internal as well. In my role, all of our team members are kind of our clients. We spend a lot of time talking to team members about their ideas and getting their input about, for example, what we should do [about our] training initiatives.”

“What would be valuable to them?” she questioned. “What do they think we should do in the coming year? We survey them yearly about our benefit program: is this still working for you? What might benefit you going forward?”

Second, Gallick recommends that job seekers remain accountable for their work. “People who accept responsibility for their commitments,” she said.

“People who are collaborative that can work with others to solve problems and achieve results” are also attractive, Gallick added.

Fourth, Gallick said that employers want someone that has a “passion for greatness” — people who are “committed to continuous improvements in their work.”

“People that are always looking for a better way,” she said. “We use the phrase, ‘Satisfaction: Never.’ This is great, but what can we do better next time?”

Finally, Gallick said that job seekers should have an “aptitude for learning [and] are interested in continuously advancing their own personal knowledge and their skills via job opportunity and professional development.”

Moving Up the Company Ladder

Those who join the team at Billhighway will find many opportunities to move ahead.

“We offer all kinds of opportunities for people to advance,” said Gallick. “We really give team members a lot of opportunities to work on cross-functional teams, job shadow and train with others. About 30 percent of our positions last year were filled via internal promotions. We like to provide opportunities at Billhighway for people to expand and grow and try to new things, so that they can stay within the company and feel they have a variety of career development opportunities available to them.”

While Billhighway does not have a tuition reimbursement program, the company does provide a variety of training opportunities. “A member of our .NET team was recently promoted to a higher position,” said Gallick. “He went to train to learn C Sharp and things like that.”

“We have a variety of programs for family/life balance,” Gallick added. “All of our team members get seven work-from-home days a year. We also have a children-at-work policy. It’s a family-friendly place. During the holidays when a lot of kids are off school, if you need to bring a child into work with you for the day, or if you have a child who is out for a snow day or whatever the reason, you can bring him or her into the office. We also have flexible hours where people can start earlier or later, whatever meets their needs.

“We try to come up with a variety of things to help them with their home life and their work-life balance. We also give everybody 20 days paid time off per year. That way they can use it for whatever they need. Holidays are separate, but [the paid time off] is for your vacation, sick days, personal — whatever you want to use it for. I think that’s probably a big thing that people like as well.”

Wherever you decide to work, get excited.

“We look for people who are excited to come in to work everyday,” said Gallick. “I think if you talk to people at our company, the culture is the thing that people love the most. It’s the kind of job where I wake up and I’m always like, ‘Oh I’ve got all these things I want to do.’ I’m excited to come in the next day and work on all kinds of projects. People really love the culture and the different programs we have in place today.”

Get Hired Now

These days, job seekers have a million options, but we know where they should turn: StreetID. We built StreetID (a financial career matchmaking website) from the ground up to accommodate Wall Street’s growing community of financial professionals. In good times and in bad, current job seekers and those looking to move on in the future can turn to StreetID and sign up for a free account and make a direct connection with relevant candidates and employers.

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