Ever wondered how some of us just have it together, while others are going all scatter bug? Let’s just say that some of us are more into strategies than the others. You have a plan for finance, family and may be for all the mortgage. Supporting all of them is your career, but most of the times it will be just a job, where we live from one day to another. The planning and the strategy part never comes up in the first few years or may be even at the middle of the career. Strategy can create all the difference.
It does not take a career coach or motivational speaker to figure out the elements that makes a career go upward bound. Take time to analyze your interactions and you get an insight into career management strategies that executives, managers or even leaders applied:
Education: We are not making this all about the degrees you get in college or universities. I have seen blue eyed MBAs getting into entry level jobs because they lack experience or the necessary skills. The common misconception is to go education first and stop the cycle after you get a job. Consider education as your potential energy. Invest in it and keep it in sync with the experience (do not over-do it).
Capability: Taking about potential energy, next in line is your raw skill needed for the job. It can be tactical skills and just that at the beginning phase. So, data processing, coding, project management or recruitment and likewise can be your tactical skills. Going up these skills need to be increasingly in tandem with strategically aligned capabilities, like research, analysis and planning for the long term.
Network: It is not a coincidence that all successful people know each other. It may sound self-promotional to the core, but even the best career management services will suggest you to build a network strategy. Do not just appear in front of people when you need them, trust me they look painfully obvious. Interact, help and be the “go-to” person. Relationships are a barter based on mutual benefits and respect. Give it time to nurture.
Experience: Starting with just a line to the most of your CV – that is what experience is. Volunteer, intern and take part in workshops that showcase your capability and support your education. When you get to an entry-level job, these internships, workshops and volunteer service may be the thin line between you being just another candidate and you landing that coveted first job. Moving up take the help of a career consultant – second opinion that too from an expert helps.
The key is to strike balance. Do not be that over-qualified guy with no experience or that jack-of-all-trades who does not meet the education updates criteria. Use one of the factors to calibrate your career. Say, you take part in workshops and volunteer or go for a degree; there are people, connect with them and keep the network dynamic and growing. Educate yourself with a focus on capabilities. Have a time outside work hours where you pay yourself. It can be networking, having a hobby – keeps the wheel rolling.