It’s Time To Take Control Of Your Career
Why do so many people wind up in jobs that they regret, even when faced with so many other good alternatives? It’s mind-boggling I know, especially since 85% of workers say they hate their jobs according to a 2017 Gallup Poll. Participants even shared that work is more of a source of frustration than fulfillment and that they are actually emotionally disconnected at work. Yet millions of people spend most of their lives and hundreds of hours each month on the job trying to make a living for themselves and their families.
Do you ever wonder what triggers bad career choices in the first place? Well, some experts speculate that many people choose jobs based on salary alone, even if it’s not particularly correlated to their job satisfaction. Others choose careers based on the opinions of others (i.e., my mom or dad thought I should pursue this path). And still, others don’t even have a clue as to what they want to do with their lives, so they end up working anywhere that will keep the lights on.
Of course, the consequences of continuing on a path of bad career choices means you’ll actually become a master at tolerating mediocre jobs that are driven by your lack of self-awareness. You’ll also wake up one day with a life full of regrets. And, who wants to deal with regrets? No one I can think of.
So with this in mind, before you apply for your next job opportunity, accept a promotion or consider switching to another industry, I want to take the time now to help you by giving you your proverbial Career Wake Up Call, and say STOP, dig deeper, and take the time now to find out who you really are, and what you really want to do, so your purpose and passion can line up with the activities that you’ll spend the next 10 years of your life doing.
So with this in mind, let’s find out if you really need a change? Start by answering these simple questions:
Based on your answers, you can get an idea about what you are satisfied and dissatisfied with. Other aspects of your work that are either positive or negative might exist as well, and you should consider how the good and not-so-good aspects match your life values.
Next, you should map out your strengths and opportunities. Strengths are what you excel at, and your opportunities are factors in your life that can affect your career positively. Whether you choose to be a mid-level manager, a director at a big public company or to be self-employed, what is suitable for you will depend on your strengths, opportunities, will and motivation. Those core forces will be the gasoline you need to reach your destination.
Now here’s another creative but highly effective way for you to launch the process of your new self-direction. First, take the time to get in a quiet place, then close your eyes to go on an imaginary journey and pretend that you are a movie producer for a film that is about your whole life. In fact, imagine that you are doing a casting call for the role of who will be your next boss or for what will be the scene of your next big career move. Would you want the best A-List performers to take on this intriguing role or would you just want another novice actor on the set? (You probably want the best)
The term “casting” is a commonly known term from the entertainment, music and movie industries. Directors cast singers, models and actors based on whether or not they can not only get the job done but also based on their ability to bring excitement, passion and chemistry to the film. Remember, your next job move should bring you a sense of excitement and fulfillment, especially since it could play a huge role in the production of your life’s performance for years to come.
The bottom line is, it’s important to take the time to identify who you are, what makes you happy and what gifts and talents you bring to the table and then do a casting call for the types of jobs that fit your personal profile.
And you might as well tap into the casting call process because guess what, your future employer is also in a role of casting you and determining if you will be a fit for their business or their brand. In fact, you can obtain many good tips on the internet or in books that are based on a company’s casting of you. Numerous books have been written about what employers look for in job applicants and resumes and the types of questions they ask in job interviews. That’s why it’s important for you to do your preliminary work and to thoroughly vet through any position you are interested in pursuing to see if the company fits you and to see if you fit the company.
My knowledge about building a career and managing career changes comes from people who have switched from the public to the private sector and vice versa. These career changes often occur in the consulting industry. My recommendations are also based on my own employment experiences and observations. Moreover, I hold a good deal of lectures for young people or people who want to make career changes but lack the courage, the tools, or the wisdom to take matters into their own hands.
But, no matter where you are on your career path, if you take heed to these three cool tips, then you’ll be well on your way to living the life you desire and building a career that you love.