The past few months have turned our lives upside down. Plans put on hold, tragedy with loss of life. Hopefully, you remain fit and healthy and are managing to keep in a calm and happy state.
As life moves on with bars, pubs and hairdressers opening, there are lots of changes happening – out there. But what about within?
During lockdown you may not have lost a stone, learnt a foreign language, or become an expert baker. But you have kept self and family together and learnt some coping strategies in a pandemic.
What are the changes you would like to consider over these next 6 months? Not just major ones, but minor ones too. And it can help to take a wider view of life. Checking out your health, family relationships, wider friendships alongside career and studies.
I’m going to use career as an example, but you can use this approach for other areas but today let’s focus on careers. You may still be on furlough, you may be uncertain of your career future, you may be actively looking.
Can you improve your job?
Take time to think about your work and identify what you like and dislike. People are different and it may be that something you dislike doing would be a great opportunity for a colleague, or you could learn a technique to work smarter. And my favourite … stop producing the monthly report and see if anyone notices!
Can you change your attitude to your job?
If you spend too much time wishing you were doing something different and telling everyone you hate your job, you will find lots of examples to support this.
This is like when people want to lose weight and keep saying to themselves that they can’t lose weight, and that’s what happens. When you tell yourself “I’m going to enjoy the process of eating healthy and moving more” you will lose weight.
So with the job.
Tell yourself each day that you are going to make a difference/ you will work effectively / focus on the top needs for your boss and you will set out to achieve this. Remind yourself of what has gone well, the effective ways you tackled a problem/ how you dealt effectively with a difficult customer.
Don’t just tell yourself but also write it down so that you can look at this again. The examples could be useful for your CV and at interview too.
Is it a mini niggle … are you just not sure?
By taking time each year to check how things are going you can identify feelings of dissatisfaction and make smaller adjustments on a more regular basis rather than waiting for things to get to a more extreme point. It’s good to know so that we can change a habit or diary when to get something changed or to create a plan for changes in our job.
It can be helpful to take some time to talk about how things are going in your job, and to see if you want to make plans. The areas covered in my career review service could be wide ranging but generally include asking a client to consider:
- How happy am I in my current job?
- Am I making the progress I want?
- Would it help to look for ways to adapt my job?
- How can I regain the enthusiasm for my job?
- Should I be making the move elsewhere?
Here are some ways you can undertake your own career review
Write down your answers to these questions
1. What is bringing you down
- Get everything written down.
2. What’s going well?
- Take some time to think about what is going well in your current job. You may say that it is well within your comfort zone, you have great friends as colleagues, it’s a comfortable journey to and from work.
3. Are there changes you could make to your job that would improve things for you?
Maybe you need to get help from someone to create or simplify processes? Or perhaps you need to be firmer on your going home time and to say no to your boss more. Or you could ask for some development – go on a course, get involved in a project, mentor a more junior member of staff.
4. If not this job, what?
What else could you do? This is when external support can help; to help you to consider what is important to you regarding your values, ideal work environment, skills you want to use, and skills to avoid. What you are prepared to sacrifice – money? time?
So you have done a mini-review. What do you want to do next? Your options are
- Stay and look to make some small changes and focus more on your personal interests
- Talk with your boss about your career development and where he or she sees your career heading, find out what development they can offer you
- Take action yourself to develop yourself ready for a move elsewhere
- Consider alternative options – what other jobs/ career paths interest you?
If you are interested in learning more about my career review service do get in touch. This is what I include in a Career Review programme:
- Exercises to get you to review your current job and also to consider your career drivers and interests.
- Joint creation of a plan on what to do next. This would list actions to support your career and life over the next 6 months. I’ll summarise this and send to you.
- A monthly follow up message for the next 3 months to help keep you focused.
- Recording of the call so you can listen to it again.