In a career rut? Well, this guest column from career guru and founder of Change Meridian, Michelle Gibbings (below), is probably just what your indifference needs. Also, check out Gibbing’s books Step Up: How to Build Your Influence at Work and ‘Career Leap: How to Reinvent and Liberate your Career’…
The world is changing. How we work is changing. To stay in the game, not even ahead of the game, it’s important to get comfortable with career change and career reinvention. To become the leader of your career, here’s five tips to get you started.
Take time to actively plan your career by setting aside time to reflect on the goals you want to achieve, progress you’ve made and identify key next steps. This includes elevating your awareness of what is happening around you, in terms of how your role, profession, industry and sector is changing. The majority of the workforce will be impacted by automation and artificial intelligence, and you want to ready for this. Also look at developments in other industries that may impact. This helps to widen your view about what’s possible for your next career steps.
Be clear on the value you offer organisations. Everyone brings certain skills and ways of operating to the work they do. It’s essential to be able to clearly articulate that value and how you can help an organisation, business or client achieve their objectives. And then to consistently deliver value with the work you do.
Build a profile where you are known for something and are respected, and have a network of people willing to back you and advocate for you. That means you need to spend time thinking more about what you can do for others than what they can do for you. The more you proactively help others, the more they will want to help you.
- How can I help a colleague or connection build their network? Is there someone in my network that I can connect them with?
- Have I got new knowledge or an insight that I could easily share with someone who would find it helpful?
- Can I help a colleague or friend with their career?
Don’t wait for the organisation you work for to develop you. Successful people know that learning is crucial to future career success and are constantly seeking out new ideas and ways to stretch themselves. This includes taking the time to understand themselves and to develop their emotional intelligence, which in many areas is more important than technical skills.
- Buy a book on a topic that you have always wanted to know about, and is different to your day job
- If you sit in an office all day, attend a course that requires you to use your hands to create something (i.e. woodwork, craft or design)
- Go to a lecture on a subject that will broaden your field of view
- Subscribe to online news so that you can get up to date information and knowledge from around the world
- Get a coach who can help you uncover your career goals and motivations
- Invest in learning more about yourself, your emotional intelligence and emotional triggers
- Be eager to take on feedback from people, including sponsors, mentors, colleagues and peers as it’s important to understand how people see us and how that differs from how we see ourselves.
How you feel both mentally and physically impacts your focus, productivity, decision making capacity and how you connect and engage with your work colleagues. As well, today’s work environment is stressful and it’s important to be able to regulate behaviour and manage stress.
- Are you getting enough sleep?
- Are you eating well and exercising?
- Are you finding time to reflect?
- Are you setting aside time each day for ‘me’?
- Are you finding ways to recharge and maintain your energy levels?
You career is an important part of your life, but it is only a part of it. This means it’s important to plan and manage your career in the context of your ‘whole of life’ goals. It was the legendary actress, Mae West, who said, “You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough”.