In today’s work world, companies no longer watch over your career for you, no longer ensuring that there is a path to take to the top. Companies change quickly, so that there are many opportunities but not a lot of warning about what the next job choice for you may be. You may even be let go without much warning. What has become apparent to most career counselors is that people need to be very clear about their own career plans and career development, in order to keep as many options as possible for the future choices.
Essentially, become your own career counselor and consultant.
There are four tools I have found that keep my career direction and planning grounded. These tools allow me to review and fill them out again and again as I change and move through my work/life journey. They are useful regardless of what point in your career you are in, just starting out or nearing retirement.
I will share these tools in this blog and the next two in the series:
Mapping your Career Path
Defining your Core Career Plan
Three Ownership Questions
The first tool is one that creates the mental readiness to focus on your career growth and development. First, you want to regularly assess the degree to which you are in a job that you truly enjoy that uses your creative talents and abilities, working for and with people you respect and can learn from, and earning a good income. If your current position does not meet these conditions, , as well as any others on your personal list, you can own the change that needs to happen. Second, mentally check the elements that may be holding you back from actively changing positions by asking yourself three questions:
1) Who or what are you hoping will move your career forward for you?
2) What are you waiting for before you learn something new, try something new, or go after something new or different in your job or career?
3) What is stopping you from taking on a new career goal or planning for your future?
Once you have mentally opened the way to spend time working on your career growth, then move onto the second tool.