How to Get back in the Driver’s Seat of your Career
As we continue in challenging times, it is important to take charge of your career. The inertia of how your work lives has been conducted has likely brought you to a point of stagnation. According to the LeanIn.Org and McKinsey & Company Women in the Workplace Study, the possible reasons why you may find yourself stuck are related to the little support provided by your superiors, be it a manager or owner of the company, little or no access to top company leaders and discrimination.
How can you know if you’re not in the driver’s seat of your career? Some signs can be: a) Others tell you what to do and you execute. That is, you are under the command of a manager who you support with part of their functions and you accept it because “at least you have a job” during difficult times; 2) You do not have strategic relationships that allow you to achieve success, nor do you network and because you think that you do not need it, that you do not have time and instead you dedicate all of your time to fulfilling your work functions; or in a personal way 3) You do not show your value, therefore others do not see it; 4) You minimize your work and your contributions; 5) You don’t share your achievements, and; 6) You are running on autopilot or you are waiting to have more experience before taking a leap.
To overcome these roadblocks, first you need to consider the following:
Emotional intelligence – The first step in developing greater emotional intelligence is self-knowledge. This helps you get to know yourself better and reflect on your strengths and weaknesses in order to better manage your emotions and respond to various situations. By being more self-aware, it will help you to be more intentional in setting your goals based on your strengths and interests. This is the first step in taking charge of your career by asking yourself: what do I want?
Don’t limit yourself! Many times we sabotage our own professional growth without knowing it. It is due to limiting thoughts that block us from moving forward. Think of ways in which you can develop your personal brand, take advantage of your network of contacts, get support from mentors and be more assertive in your communication.
Once you consider that you are working on these factors, then get going with the following steps:
1) Set short-term and long-term goals – Start by asking yourself where you want to be in the next year and in the next 5 years. Once you have the answers to those questions, you can “reverse engineer” to develop a plan that will serve as your roadmap. This plan should include milestones that will help you stay focused.
2) Be realistic – Recognize that your success and failure are your responsibility. If your goals are realistic and achievable, then the only thing holding you back is yourself. Plus, it’s always better to start small and build up toward your larger goal.
3) Don’t do it alone – Seek support from others. Once you have established your goals, communicate them and ask for help to reach them if necessary. The more you involve people in your goals, the better chance you have of reaching your goals.
4) Maintain self-confidence – Don’t let fear affect your confidence and limit your progress. Once you begin to experience success, you will naturally become more confident.
5) Find ways to grow – Look for opportunities to try new things within your organization, your community or through networks. Nurture your networks! It is the only way you have to get closer to more contacts that can help you grow.
6) Try new activities – Sign up for training classes; you will have to sacrifice other activities to give yourself enough time and energy to pursue your career goals.
The happiest and most satisfied people are those who have decided to take charge of their professional career and personal life and not stay in the status quo. At iCatalyze, we can help you build your own roadmap and get back in the driver’s seat of your career.
If you’d like a FREE guide to help you get unstuck and start thinking about your next steps, click here so you can get your own copy by email!