Once you’ve worked in the same industry for a few years, you’re bound to hit a learning plateau. Although we might not like to admit it, our industries often become less appealing as time passes. I work for a surety bond insurance company, so I can tell you firsthand that finding new and interesting ways to learn about my profession can be challenging.

When boredom strikes, review these 25 tips that can help you grow your career.

  1. Start a blog and write about topics that require you to do research.
  2. Interview others who work in your industry.
  3. Follow legislative updates that could affect your industry at the federal, state and local levels.
  4. Subscribe to publications that specifically target your industry.
  5. Read about market trends for different jobs in your industry.
  6. Study your competition and brainstorm ways to improve yourself or your company.
  7. Watch educational YouTube videos that explain technical aspects of your industry.
  8. Enroll in some accredited online degree programs for formal educational training.
  9. Join professional organizations and associations.
  10. Attend relevant industry conferences.
  11. Volunteer your services at industry events; you never know what you’ll learn or who you might meet.
  12. Volunteer for a local community organization to improve your secondary job skills, such as photography, data entry or customer service.
  13. Teach free classes so others in your community can learn from your experience.
  14. Interact with industry stakeholders via Twitter.
  15. Join LinkedIn groups and engage in conversations.
  16. Found a Facebook group or page that connects you with like-minded professionals.
  17. Schedule conference calls with some of your colleagues to discuss recent market changes.
  18. See the industry from a different perspective by taking your boss, or an employee, out to lunch.
  19. Organize happy hours with other professionals who work in your local job market.
  20. Find a new mentor by contacting influential industry experts who could provide invaluable advice.
  21. Form a mutually beneficial partnership with another business or professional.
  22. Set up an online poll to see where your views stand in relation to other industry professionals.
  23. Use Google’s keyword search tool to learn which terms people look for when searching for your industry online; consider learning more about these topics.
  24. Learn to build a website from scratch; doing so will make you more marketable in almost any industry.
  25. Hone your writing and presentation skills.

I hope these tips inspire you to get creative when looking for new ways to learn about your industry.

AvatarDanielle Rodabaugh

Danielle Rodabaugh is the chief editor and marketing supervisor at SuretyBonds.com, an online insurance agency that works with new business owners across the nation. You can keep up with Danielle on Google+.