Feeling like you are one of many, no way to see a path to a more strategic role from where you find yourself. You know you are not completely fulfilled in your career. You pick a direction, any direction to find an alternative to the track you are on.
This leads you to begin interviewing, within your company or outside. You ask, why am I not getting that interview? Or after getting the interview, why did I not get the position? Even if you are working in the same company and in the same position, are you asking why you are not progressing in your career?
Is this you? And, if so, do you see what is happening?
If you are doing the same thing all the time, no matter how well you do it, no one will see you differently. If you want something new in your career, you must do something different.
You can put it this way: “You can’t get there, the same way you got here”. Or the way Einstein said it: “Doing the same thing and expecting different results is the definition of insanity”. No matter how you say it, something has to change if you want different results.
Let’s say you dream of being in a more strategic role. To date, you have been very operational. Are you seeking positions where you can prove you have what it takes to do the job?
Do you apply for a strategic role? Do you ask to be part of that new project at work? Or are you thinking right now, how can I do that when I don’t have the skills and/or experience (are you crazy)?
Why Are You Looking?
Let’s start by looking at why you want a more strategic role.
Do you recall being asked to get involved in a project or you had an opportunity to be part of a strategic conversation? It lit you up like fireworks on the 4th of July. You were so energized, you thought, this is what I really want to be doing.
You got a taste of something different, some exposure to another possibility to earn your living. Something woke up inside you to make you start asking yourself, what is possible for me? Is there more than what I am doing?
Understanding what I call the characteristics or attributes of a position which truly excites you is more important than your skills and experience. Don’t get me wrong; no one is going to hire a business person to be a medical doctor, just because that is what they truly want.
But it also doesn’t mean that an accountant can’t become a professional leadership coach. Oh, that’s what I did. In fact, I changed my career six times after leaving college. (No, I won’t tell you what span of time that entailed.)
Back to the point, what you really want to do will take reflection and self-exploration. As a coach, I ask many questions and will take the time to truly understand where you want to take your career.
Some people know in general what they want, yet still need to understand what is driving that decision. Others know what they don’t want, and they need to understand what it is they do want in their careers.
When you are clear on your purpose you begin to see a path. The path will show you how the experience you have can be transitioned into a new career.
The skills you have may be very useful in the new career and applied in different ways. You may have skills you are unaware you acquired while gaining experience doing whatever it is you have done in the past. You start seeing how you can get out of the forest!
Now armed with a true understanding, you are ready to present yourself for the position you truly want. You will have the passions that others don’t have to differentiate you as a viable candidate. You will ask more questions about how the position fits the person you want to be and that will result in a level of confidence about achieving your ideal position.
Fulfill your potential by investing in yourself to discover what you truly want in your career and your life.
I would be honored to support you on your path to fulfill your potential. Remember when you rise, you raise those around you to be a better version of themselves.
Laura Di Tomasso is an executive coach based in Austin, Texas. You can contact her and learn more about coaching opportunities.