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Upskilling Tips for the New Year

By Sukhpreet Chana, Misha Manani and Joe Pilbrow


The new year is a time for fresh beginnings and resolutions. It’s a chance to reflect on the previous year and think about where you can improve. You may have seen the 2023 yearly reports or articles about how the publishing industry might look in 2024. It’s a dynamic sector with unexpected trends and initiatives around every corner, which means you never know what opportunities might come up. That’s why we’re equipping you with the tools to start 2024 with a bang and to help you get on track to achieve your goals. Here’s to a new year filled with upskilling! 


Understanding the Job Market 


  • Progress in your career: There is so much support available in this industry to develop your career. The Society of Young Publishers (SYP) offers Ahead, a mentorship scheme that assists those looking to take the next steps within the industry, and The Publishing Training Centre delivers online courses to help you learn key skills via virtual, self-study or in-company courses. 

  • Transferring from another industry: Transitioning from one industry to another can be overwhelming, but highlighting your transferable skills can demonstrate your suitability for a role. Remember that it takes persistence, motivation and diligence to reach your goals. On a practical note, don’t forget to update your CV and cover letter before applying. 


Resources and Organisations 


  • Join the SYP: A brilliant organisation dedicated to helping young people who are looking to start or progress in their publishing career. There are seven branches across the UK and Ireland that run different events and masterclasses. Become a member to receive discounted entry to events, the newsletter, InPrint magazine, networking opportunities and trade discounts.

  • Become a member of the Publishing Hopefuls Facebook Group: Connect with other publishing hopefuls or those in junior positions. There are always posts about perfecting job applications, interview tips and navigating the job hunt. You can also post a question of your own. People sometimes share the CVs and cover letters that got them a job. 

  • Develop your commercial awareness: You don’t have to pay to read book publications to do this. Check out the articles from BookMachine, Publishers Association, Publishing Perspectives, Creative Access and SYP and, rest assured, we also have you covered here at The Publishing Post

  • Engage on social media: There is a huge book community on X (Twitter), so create an account to follow publishers, industry professionals, literary agents and bookshops. TikTok is another thriving platform for book recommendations, special editions and tips for joining the industry. You can join LinkedIn to connect with those who work in publishing and network. Instagram is also a great place to keep track of the latest publications. 


Upskilling Resolutions 


  • Develop your skills: Whether you’re searching for your first publishing role or looking to take the next step in your career, it’s important to keep growing. Look for free training opportunities, ask your manager what your current company can do to help and, most importantly, take the initiative to do what you can.

  • Set SMART goals: Set targets for yourself that are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-Bound. These will keep you focused and productive. An example could be reading two new books each month and writing a short review of each to post on a book blog or social media platform.

  • Stay positive: When trying to break into the industry, it can sometimes feel like you’re fighting a losing battle with no end in sight. It’s so important to stay positive and focus on one step of the process at a time. Find jobs you’re genuinely excited to apply for. Positivity and excitement will show in your application, which will hugely benefit your chances. Focus on the positives, like being asked for an interview, rather than the rejections.

  • Maintain a good work-life balance: Don’t forget to make the most of your free time. Developing new skills and taking on extra responsibilities at work are important, but make sure you still have time to step away from work or job applications to unwind and enjoy yourself.


Thank you for reading issue eighty-seven! We hope you have a wonderful Christmas and New Year. Join us again in 2024 for issue eighty-eight with our Upskilling Dictionary for the Digital Department. 


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