Tag Archives: career mapping

Yes, you can!

This week I’ve talked to three of my coaching clients who were experiencing different levels of frustration. The job search isn’t going as smoothly as they would like.  Interviews aren’t getting scheduled as quickly as they’d like. One has accepted a better offer, advanced in her career; yet it’s not her utopian role.

Job search frustration, with a side of FEAR. What if you don’t get the job you really want?  What if you don’t transition into your ideal role?

Well, what if you do?  What if you can land the career of your dreams?

Many of us have the voice of the naysayer, the critic, ever present, constantly projecting negative outcomes.  The committee that won’t stop talking.  Today, that voice needs to stop.

When you doubt your abilities, feel discouraged, or are on the verge of despair, don’t give up.   I pray that you hear another voice telling you,“You can do it and you will!”

No one said a job search or job transition was easy. It’s hard work. Even when you are using a strategic job search road map.  Even when you are leveraging the power of networking, reaching out and establishing connections with key contacts at your target potential employers.  Relationships take time.  Building trust and credibility takes time.  Having the right doors open takes time.  Be patient and persist.

I know you can do this.  You are worthy of engaging in work that you are both capable of and passionate about.   If today you are frustrated, give yourself permission to feel your feelings; just remember feelings aren’t facts.  Don’t let your feelings derail you from taking action toward your career goals.

Pause and reflect on what brings you the most joy and satisfaction in your work?  Would you like to feel that way more than less?  Visualize you in your dream job.

Now, take an honest inventory of the actual work you’ve completed this week in your job search.  How many new contacts did you make?  Networking events that you attended?  Number of calls to former colleagues who are working in your target niche or who have connections that could help you?  If you didn’t reach your target job search activities; then recommit to completing the actions next week.

ACTION is the magic key.  Keep taking positive actions forward.  Make the call.  Send the LinkedIn request to connect.  Call your former colleague; catch up on projects they are working on and bring them up to date on your career goals.

Keep believing. Keep taking positive steps daily toward your goals.  You can do this!  You are not alone, I’m here every step of the way cheering you on.

May you hear my voice encouraging you: “You CAN do this, and you will.”

Career Tune Up

Career Tune UP

 Springtime naturally brings a sense of awakening for me. It’s a time of renewal and rebirth.   A couple weeks ago I went into my local mechanic for a routine oil & filter change.  It was a super busy Saturday and it took a couple hours to complete.  I was willing to wait because I know the importance of routine maintenance for a vehicle.   Your career is no different.

Successful careers involve regular check-ups (updates to your resumes with recent projects and accomplishments) and periodic more in-depth tune ups or alignments.

What about you?

What is your current career dilemma?

How satisfied are you in your current position?

Are you engaged and challenged professionally? Or do you feel deflated and tired at the end of the day?  Do you enjoy your work?  Wake up excited?

Carve out time to explore some questions.

What allows you to provide the best service to others?  Where do you add the greatest value?

What is it that brings you joy?  What type of work makes you happy?  Is it working with customers?  Promoting new programs?  Creating websites?  Developing enterprise infrastructure? Leading groups?  Training?

Think of this appointment as a “check-up from the neck up.”   Use the time to take stock.  Inventory your skills and your assets.  If you are unhappy, remember you have choices.   You have the ability to improve your happiness and career satisfaction; if you are willing to take action.

A career tune up involves taking an honest assessment of our knowledge, skills and abilities.  It involves exploring career options that maximize your value and contribution.  When your skills and interests overlap with your passion, you will experience greater levels of engagement, contribution and overall career satisfaction.   When you align your career with your innate talents, skills and abilities, everything flows more smoothly. Work becomes effortless and life more meaningful. You may be surprised when your energy and enthusiasm come back too!

Can I help you?  If you need help with exploring your career options, I provide career transition coaching in-person, over the phone and via Skype.

Dare to Soar

Many years ago I walked into a Successories store and bought cards that had a picture of an eagle with the words “Dare to Soar. Your attitude in life almost always determines your altitude.” I believe having a positive mental attitude is a key to success. That your attitude (and your actions) determines your place in life and in your career.

You may be reading this and thinking, “It’s not that simple.” Or “yes, but, you don’t understand, my case is different.” You may have a long list of reasons why you can’t succeed or have the career that you would love. It’s okay. I understand. For many years, I made excuses for not following my path. After all, I was a single mom raising two girls. How could I leave an industry and career track that had afforded me a six figure income, to pursue starting a business in career coaching when I needed the security of a steady income? However, when your work feels like drudgery and there is no joy, it’s time to evaluate what you are doing. If you are feeling burnt out, discouraged or depressed in your current job; know that these are symptoms of not following your vision.

It’s time to ask yourself some tough questions and assess your options. Pursuing your “dream” career does not have to be an all or nothing pursuit. Begin by listening to your heart. Give yourself permission to dream about what your ideal career would look like. Begin to chart out a career map. Take positive steps toward your goals. Update your resume. Network. Go after career openings that take you closer to your ideal role.

I am not suggesting that the process of following your vision, connecting with your passion, and pursuing your life’s purpose is easy. Nor is it a straight line. Often there are stepping-stones. You may have something you love to do that may be better as a hobby than as a career. Perhaps you’d like to be a photographer, yet you have a full-time career in Technology earning six figures. Do you leave a steady income that supports your family to pursue your utopian role of traveling the world, walking the beaches and taking pictures of sunsets? I’m not suggesting that you do. How about taking your camera with you on all your business trips? Carve out time for a couple of hours to take pictures and start sharing them with the world.

Funny how it works. When you give yourself permission to follow your heart and play in the realm you are passionate about; your happiness increases. Your overall well-being increases. You’re soaring and it’s effortless. Your energy is renewed. It carries over into all areas of your life, your friendships, your family, your community.

Find a visual that remind you of your goal. Whether it’s a card with an eagle with the words “Dare to Soar” or a handwritten sticky note that has the Nike slogan – Just Do It!

Dare. Risk. Visualize. Act. As the process unfolds, your confidence and self-respect will improve; your satisfaction with life will increase. You may even find yourself with other eagles soaring in the clouds.

If you need help discovering your strengths, exploring your career options and creating a map to your ideal career, contact MGM Solutions today. We can help you successfully transition your career.

Career Mapping

The approach we take to career mapping is based on the strategic planning tool of SWOT analysis.  This is a process where you take a hard look at your Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats, and plan accordingly.

SWOT analysis can be carried out for a product, place, industry or person.  It involves specifying the objective and identifying the internal and external factors that are favorable and unfavorable to achieve that objective.  As it relates to your career, you map out your end goal.  Here’s some questions to get you started: 

What would you like to achieve?  Do you visualize your goals?  Do you have positive affirmations that help you live your goals?  

Completing a SWOT Analysis can help you tremendously by uncovering career mapping swot analysisweaknesses, discovering strengths and developing an action plan to overcome the obstacles that have prevented you from reaching your goals. 

Knowledge is Power 

Once you know the Truth you can be free.  You can empower yourself with the tools and resources you need to accomplish your wildest desires and grandest career goals.

This is a practical and simple tool that you can use. 
Okay then, let’s get started!
 
Strengths
Make a list of all your strengths. In particular, consider what skills, knowledge and experience you have that makes you indispensable to your current employer (and future prospective employers).

You will also want to consider what the demand for these skills is in the marketplace. Think about your functional and technical skills as well as your soft skills.

Do you know how to perform market analysis? Business process improvement?  Project Management? Understand SEC reporting requirements? Are you great at motivating teams to peak performance? Are you the one that the CEO calls to use your diplomatic skills to facilitate tough negotiations?  Are you the “go to” person who builds consensus among stakeholders? Identify these.  These are the strengths that make up your value proposition.

Weaknesses
Next, take an honest inventory of yourself.  List the areas where you can improve. What has been shared with you during performance evaluations? 

What items are relevant to the type of positions that you would like to have? After you identify the knowledge, skills, and abilities that you are lacking you can decide if you are willing to invest the time and energy to improve upon these skills.
 
Opportunities
Give yourself permission to dream.  If you could do anything in the world for your career, what would that be?  This is the step I like to hand my clients paper with blue skies and white puffy clouds. 

Dream.  Dream Big! 

Let your mind wander to the infinite possibilities that surround you.  What do you see?  What ideas do you have for growth?  Where can you contribute to and add the greatest value?   Is it within your current employer or outside your company? 

During this step in our coaching, many clients discover there are real opportunities available that they had never considered before. Choices.  You are not trapped. A whole new world opens up. Hope is restored.

Threats
What are you afraid of?  What is the worst thing that could happen? What can go wrong?

Examples can include:  changes to the executive management team, a new Executive Director, budget cuts, downsizing, outsourcing; mergers or acquisitions; health changes; pending major life events . 

This is the place where you have full permission to let the committee have its say (the voices in your head that tells you the sky is falling) and list everything that comes to mind.   Write it down.  Put it on paper.  Say it out loud and take the power out of it.  This is the Fear that has held you hostage.  Remember that the acronym FEAR stands for False Evidence Appearing Real.

Now that you have this list, make a plan. During MGM Solutions career coaching sessions on Career Mapping, after we have completed a SWOT Analysis we start with opportunities. 

What are the career titles or positions that you would like to explore? Once you have uncovered positions that you would really like and had not considered before, let’s explore them.

Identify where you would like to be.  Now, review the strengths and relationships you can leverage to get there;  also consider any weaknesses you need to overcome.

Prioritize your biggest threats and make a plan to neutralize them. If you have never done this, you can approach this with confidence.  This is a proven method to build actionable plans that will lead you to success.

 If you need help with your SWOT Analysis or Career Mapping, contact MGM Solutions to assist you. We are here to help you and provide custom personalized solutions to meet our client’s individual needs.