Recently, I've had the fortune of receiving some valuable career advices from battled veterans:
- At a junior level, there is limited responsibility. Therefore, take high risk projects that give you the most opportunities for growth. Since you are not responsible for the success of the project, these projects -- while giving you great learning opportunities -- are not actually high risk, while still giving high reward.
- Try to understand the why. Even if your day-to-day work may seem like mundane investigations into existing systems, try to understand why the solutions were developed the way they were. Don't just understand the answers, but understand the bigger picture and the philosophy behind them.
- Organize the unknowns and risks of different strategies. Use this information to select the best plan, and convince others of its merit.
- (From the book, Growing Together: Road to Agile): Stray outside your comfort zone. When you find something repetitive, that is when you have stopped learning. Try to move yourself back into the "right amount of challenge" as per Csikszentmihalyi's theory of flow; increase the task's difficulty, or add handicaps to your skills so you grow more in different ways.