Susan Solovic: Using Your Free Time to Improve Your Career

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

(KTVI) - If your career is stuck in the mud, hose it off at quitting time, it's the best time to tune up your future.  Small Business Expert and CEO of, Susan Solovic explains how you can use your off-hours to accelerate your success.

1.  Join After-work Happy Hours.  Often we think of happy hour as being for the young, singles who don't have family responsibilities.  The older we get the more it feels like a waste of time.  But don't ignore it completely.  Good idea to join occasionally so people get to know you in an informal setting. 

2.  Go Back to School.  Take a course or even a seminar to expand your knowledge base.  When you take a night class or a Saturday class, most likely the other students are business professionals like you.  So get to know them.  For example, executive MBA programs often create life-long professional networks which can truly enhance your career.  And of course as they say knowledge is power.

3.  Get Involved in Your Industry.  What ever industry you are in -- there is some sort of professional association.  Get involved on the local -- even national level.  Know what's going on in your business -- the trends, new technologies, etc.  But also, once again it's about building your network.  And people will see you as a leader.

4.  Volunteer.  Choose a charity or community effort and volunteer.  Encourage your co-workers to do the same.  Most non-profit organizations have boards made up of business leaders.  It's a good way to meet people, but also to demonstrate your strengths.

5.  Join a Fitness Club.  Getting in shape and staying healthy is just good business sense.  But it's also a chance to network with other professionals who understand the importance of how a fit mind and body increases productivity and your ability to succeed.