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You don’t have to sacrifice happiness for career growth

If you have been dreaming of a change in your career, NOW is the perfect time to lay the groundwork for what is next. The work world as we know it is forever changed and you don’t want to get left behind.

In fact, I challenge that there will never again be a more perfect time to pivot roles, change industries or level-up. Whether you have lost your job or you are still working…

Don’t believe you have to take a step back when you make a career change. We’ve been told this lie so often we tend to believe this is just how things are. 

But there is a process you have to follow.  Doing what you’ve always done won’t take you anywhere new. Follow these three Power Moves and you’ll be on your way to the career you’ve always dreamed of!

  • Power Move #1:  Love what you do
  • Power Move #2:  Have opportunities come to you
  • Power Move #3:  Get all the best advice and business insights

Power Move #1:  Love what you do

YUP, that old cliché.

You have heard it so many times so let me share with you a perspective that you may not have thought about.

Even if there is more money and status involved, if you pivot or level up into something that does not bring you joy, I promise it will have a very short shelf life. It won’t be long before you start to feel the dread all over again and one day, just like before, you will look in the mirror and frustration will be seeping in and taking hold. That is when it will start to undermine your success.

HOW do you find what you love to do?  This is not a pro and con list; it is taking an inventory of what you have done that brings you joy and working the 5 steps below. 

  1. Remember your big wins.
  2. Find the common thread.
  3. Define and commit to your core values.
  4. Focus on being in environments that give you the most energy.
  5. Explore industries that support your interests.

It takes just as much time and effort to get a crappy job as it is a good one….so why not make sure you get a good one? 

In his commencement address to Stanford University’s graduating class of 2005, Steve Jobs offered this advice:

“The only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.”  

Power Move #2:  Have opportunities come to you

Treat your career like a company by creating a compelling brand and marketing strategy so you are always part of the conversation.

Your brand is your “IT Factor”The unique blend of experience, capabilities and perspective that makes you… YOU.

  • Understand and be confident in your value and the impact you make.
  • Create a purposeful brand that is authentic, in high-demand and short supply.
  • Use every tool you have to help you realize you can successfully pivot to something new. If you don’t believe it, how are you going to get anyone else to?

Stay relevant and top of mind by being part of the conversation.

Did you know that 93% of recruiters said they review a candidate’s social profile before making a decision? The conversation has already started well before you even know you’re being considered.  How do you become part of the conversation in a new industry or role?  Follow these five steps.

  1. Identify how you naturally interact on a social level.
  2. Choose activities that give you energy and inspire you.
  3. Combine passive and active tactics.
  4. Commit to engaging others with your expertise, ideas and insights.
  5. Put your vision and wisdom out there for others to see and respond to.

Consider yourself as the CEO of “You Inc.”

As the CEO you are responsible for making sure the company thrives. In this case your “company” is your career. Self-promotion can feel awkward but it doesn’t have to. In our world of social media, we all know that the first thing people do is search online when they hear of something or someone new, don’t get left on the sidelines.

Market yourself as if your future depended on it… because it does.

Here’s a perspective too few people take.  Hiring someone is a buying decision and for most people one of the most important buying decisions they’ll ever make. Who they decide to hire (or not) will have lasting impacts on their career and future. You need to focus on what you can do for them and NOT what they can do for you; you’ll find they will be much more responsive to having YOU fulfill this need.

It’s time to see beyond your resume and take a different approach to get what you want. Use your resume as a sales tool and not just a showcase of your experience.

Power Move #3: Get all the best advice and business insights

When you build a purposeful community of colleagues that want you to succeed as much as you do; you are only one phone call away from the support you need

Porter Gale, author of Your Network is Your Net Worth has an interesting perspective. She challenges people to reframe how they think about their net worth by placing a higher value on the meaningful connections we actively maintain with others. Those relationships translate into business opportunities which impact your personal bottom line.

You Need a Strong Tribe to Survive

We never seem to have time to network and build strong relationships yet when we need them the most, we really wish we had. We also don’t put much thought into building a purposeful community that we can rely on. We typically pick up people as we move throughout our career with very little foresight and planning.  Now is the time to fix all of that and begin building steady habits that you can use throughout your career.

As the CEO of YOU Inc., think about networking as filling your advisory board and building a dream team that will help your company (career) flourish and grow no matter what life throws at it. When pivoting to a new industry you might just be staring out at a lot of empty seats.  Don’t let this scare you.  It is not as difficult as you may think.

  1. Take a long look at how your network stacks up. Do they all fit into your current world?
  2. Determine the network you need to reach your goals.
  3. Identify the gaps.
  4. Build a plan to strengthen your community and close those gaps fast!
  5. Remember, people like to help and we never win alone. 

There are many different ways to network – It doesn’t always mean you have to be working a room. 

Many introverts and extroverts alike would rather have a root canal then network. But it doesn’t have to be that way.  By knowing where you want to go and building a fantastic story around it, you will be amazed at how much easier it will be to share that with others. 

Still not convinced?  Here’s the reality – less than 10% of Gen Xer’s or Baby Boomer’s found their most recent job on a job board. Those who make over 100K are least likely to find their job through a job board or employer website. Stop wasting your time feeling busy and working the job boards. 

Embracing these three Power Moves will start your journey on the right footing.  While it may seem a bit daunting, just break each Power Move down into bite size pieces and tackle one thing at a time.

When you find yourself getting stuck or being overwhelmed just remember:

  • Doing what you love will bring you greater satisfaction and have a positive impact on your life
  • Re-Building your tribe just means that you get to meet new and interesting people who will help you in your journey and love the same things you do.
  • When you talk about what you are passionate about, it makes marketing yourself and your skills so much easier… like riding a bike.

Your challenge for this week

Take some time to figure out what you are passionate about that could lead to a new career.  Use the 5 steps in Power Move #1 as your guide. Finding your passion needs to have intention and history woven into it.  And if you get stuck, ask people you trust to help you.

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