Published on 17 Bright Ideas from the Career Redesign Program.
Check now if you have an Avoidance Plan in place
If the thought of undertaking career planning is putting you off, be aware of this. If you have unconscious plan underway, that is an avoidance plan, maybe you need to ask yourself a few questions.
Avoidance strategies usually come out of a reluctance to change, even if this means moving from an uncomfortable position. The status quo is very attractive, and the internal voices will tell you so…. Don’t rock the boat…. Better the devil you know…. The grass is always greener….
By undertaking the reflections and activities on the Career Redesign website, you can start to think through the cost of change and what you are willing to give up to have the career you said you wanted to actually happen.
You may also just need to find a way to keep your motivation and energy levels up. Is it a passive habit and inertia that is kicking in at this point? If you are starting to feel apathetic then setting well formed outcomes will help you refocus your attention.
Forbes recently ran an article on the “The Most Influential Career Sites For 2014” to help cut through the myriad of Internet careers sites.
To save you reading all of them, as most of the 35 mentioned are applicable only to US, these listed had some great transferrable advice via their resources and blog pages.
To see full article go to www.forbes.com/sites/kensundheim/2013/12/18/35-of-the-most-influential-career-sites-for-2014/
CAREEREALISM.com – Site’s motto is that “every job is temporary” and that we all should have access to good career coaching. Proven experts must meet the site’s strict criteria for contributing tools, information, and resources to ensure readers get cutting-edge advice to help them with all aspects of career development. The site’s especially well known for it’s daily career tip newsletter, live webinars with top experts, and video tutorials available on-demand. @careerealism
Personal Branding Blog - Career mastermind and WSJ best selling author (Promote Yourself: The New Rules for Career Success), Dan Schawbel runs a magnificent career, interviewing, personal branding, entrepreneurship and job seeker oriented site. Definitely, this is one of our favorites. @DanSchawbel
Lindsey Pollak’s Career and Workplace Advice Blog - Lindsey Pollak, Millennial workplace expert and best-selling author of Getting from College to Career, shares her sought after advice on both the changing nature of work and how young professionals can successfully navigate their careers. Lindsey is also LinkedIn's LNKD -1.88% official Ambassador, so her blog will keep readers up to speed on all that’s trending with one of the hottest social networks today. @lindseypollak
PenelopeTrunk.com – Raw, honest sometimes-cringeworthy career advice that you’ll ever read. Penelope says what no one else will say, and she says it with great insight and humor. @penelopetrunk
Every New Years Eve I remember my Italian mother was adamant that we stay up until midnight and then smash a pile of old plates to bring in the New Year. She was certain that it bought good fortune and once she got rolling, would do it with such emotion and rigor, saying it had something to do with removing any bad omens from the past year and bring on fresh new beginnings.
It was great fun, made loads of noise and meant someone else had to clean it up the next day. This was a tradition that lasted well into my teens or…… until we ran out of plates.
I had more success with this tradition than I did with New Years resolutions. It always seemed that committing to being thinner, healthier or quitting smoking without a plan was doomed for failure. These resolutions meant changing well-entrenched habits and their success was contingent on having increasingly stronger will power.
So given most resolutions end in failure by February and make us feel worse about ourselves, then why bother?
Maybe another approach is to think about what specific outcomes you want to achieve over a 12-month period, and then create a simple plan made up of many mini chucks to get there.
Work out what people, resources and systems you need to bring into your life to help support you to succeed.
And if your momentum is prone to slow down, then consider what would make you accountable to these goals…say it out loud, tell your friends, write a blog post or share it on Facebook.
Consider technology that can be used to remind you of these goals. You can schedule times into your calendar, set email reminders and use Apps to track your progress. I was recently introduced to Lift- a website that helps you reach your goals with simple reminders and plans within a like-minded community. (see https://lift.do)
And most importantly acknowledge and reward yourself when you have mini wins.
Try using these strategies if you’re thinking about career change. If you’re not clear then start with a small side project. Create a low risk strategy, explore and build up your confidence and insights.
Don’t waste time wondering and over thinking it- make a commitment that will really matter and see where your career could go.
The aim of side projects is to discover if that idea/role/job and career you really love, can work in reality. If you think of this as a low-risk strategy you can explore without the fear of failure. You’ll also discover if this you love, continues to be loved, or becomes more routine once you have to do it over and over again. But you’ll also discover if there are elements of the project that you want to explore further and could become a revised project.
If you think of these ventures as side or pet projects either within or external to your professional activities, you may find they take on a life of their own, as you meet new people, move into different sectors and start to capitalize on new possibilities.
Some hints to get you started from Swissmiss:
Side Projects are the new next trend:
Check out Side Racket:
Side Racket is a global community where you can create, discover and join amazing projects.
Here is a section of 5 books I highly recommend that focus on the many aspects of career change. As you reflect on this year and what your next career move is, take time with advice from these authors.
The Element, How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything by Dr Ken Robinson
A breakthrough book about talent, passion, and achievement from one of the world's leading thinkers on creativity and self-fulfillment. The Element is the point at which natural talent meets personal passion and is an inspirational read for anyone thinking of a career change.
Understand your own psychology:
Navigating Midlife, Women becoming themselves by Robyn Vickers- Willis
Based on a psychological framework and using personal reflection, interviews and metaphor, the techniques aim at an enriched second half of life. This guide is aimed at all women, but particularly those aged from 35 to their 50s, who feel the need for change but don't know how to make it happen.
The Happiness Advantage, The seven principles that fuel success and performance at work by Shawn Achor
Most people want to be successful and happy. Success does not beget happiness. Based on the study conducted on happiness and human potential, this title presents seven core principles of positive psychology that each one of us can use to improve our performance and gain a competitive edge at work.
Be your own boss:
Be A Free Range Human: Escape the 9-5 ,create the life you love and still pay the bills by Marianne Cantwell
Packed with inspiring case studies from people who've done it, this title shares unconventional ideas and practical steps to: discover what you really want to do with your life; create a 'free range' career tailor-made for your unique personality and interests; and ditch the job and still make as much (or more) as you do now.
The $100 Start Up, Fire your boss, do what you love and work better to live more by Chris Guillebeau
Change your job to change your life. You no longer need to work nine-to-five in a big company to pay the mortgage, send your kids to school and afford that yearly holiday. You can quit the rat race and start up on your own. The $100 Startup is your manual to a new way of living.
It's important to have some time to reflect each year, not just about your jobs, careers and where we're going, but also on how we've approached the year. The following reflective exercise is the most useful one I've found to help me ensure I take note of the great things I've achieved over the year and some of the stuff I'd like to forget..... !
The questions are asked in a very articulate, insightful and sensitive way.
Take some time with this one and enjoy it.... you deserve it.
I was recently fortunate enough to interview a number of everyday people, who are truly inspiring because they have acted on their career aspirations.
They participated in the interviews as part of my book 'Find Your Career Sweet Spot: A creative approach to a successful midlife career transition'. (due for release early 2014)
They provide personal reflections on their midlife or midcareer change, how they survived the transition and share what they learnt from taking the plunge.
The first can be read at www.careerredesign.com.au/been-there--done-that.html
I hope you enjoy these and along the way find courage to undertake your own career redesign.
“Boomers were portrayed as technologically inept, inflexible, and set in their ways “.
So says Australian research from a 2011 commissioned survey that surveyed workers who saw babyboomers in a negative light.
But its critique also noted that there is good reason to be sceptical of such surveys as further research shows older workers are less likely to resign or call in sick and have fewer work injuries. This adds up to measurable savings, especially on recruitment and training. There is also evidence to show they are the fastest growing users of technology.
With the Australian retirement age to increase to 67, this greying of the workplace will mean more of us stay in the workforce.
So in recognising that age discrimination is real, we also need strategies to combat this ageism and prove these surveys wrong. This means considering where skills updating is needed - whether it be in IT, particularly in social or digital media or in the way we present a case for our reliability and experience by updating CVs, interview techniques and communicating your unique selling point.
Age will matter if you you ignore how some employers view it, buy into the survey myths, or worse, apologise or lie about your age.
The key to an ongoing successful career is to orient your career and life to be in alignment with your core values. While it may take time to fully express your values, it’s important to start with whatever you can do now. By reviewing your life’s peak experiences and defining moments you can see if you can add these back in your life on a more regular basis.
The reality is that you may not be able to make money from your passions, but that doesn’t mean that they should be pursued and aligned with core values.
It may be that this can become a gift you return to the community through pro bono activities.
It's also a way to ensure that your values are defined to be able to articulate these to ensure they are compatible with potential employers.