Career Woman

How to change your career during a pandemic

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As the world faces unprecedented challenges and workplaces experience increasing pressure, now more than ever taking charge of your career is essential.

Victoria Beckham once said she wanted to be more famous than Persil Automatic, a laundry detergent that is a household name in the UK. When she entered the music scene in the early 1990s as part of the Spice Girls many people wrongly assumed that Posh Spice and the group would be a ‘one-hit wonder’. Fast forward 25+ years, and she’s a successful and respected fashion designer.

She ignored her critics, aimed high — and got there.

Much of what happens in life is based on what we tell ourselves, and how we respond to the expectations of others. To make a career leap, you need to ditch the expectations of others and any limiting old beliefs to put yourself securely in the driver’s seat. So, if one of your goals for 2020 was to find a new job, here’s eight steps to get you on track.

1. Check how fit your career is:

Assessing your career periodically helps you determine whether you are in a rut or holding on to an unrealistic, outdated view of your career. It also challenges you to think about what may need to shift and what you may need to do more or less of to ensure a successful, sustainable and rewarding career.

2. Realise your potential:

Look at what may be holding you back from making career choices. Identify your why; that is, your purpose and why you do what you do.  Consider this in the context of the life you want to have and your life circumstances.

3. Explore what your options are:

Understand your tolerance for change and your willingness to take career risks. This includes identifying your strengths, and knowing how the world of work is changing so you can identify good options to progress.

4. Choose what you will progress:

Filter your options to find your sweet spot – the options that fit with your life circumstances, goals and willingness to take a risk with your career.

5. Construct your plan to follow:

Build your plan to execute your career leap. This includes considering all the key elements that need to be in place to make the change happen, and how you are going to target and measure your progress to achieving your new job.

6. Shape your career brand:

Your career identity will shift as your career progresses.  It’s essential to understand this and consciously cultivate your career brand and reputation.  This starts with understanding how you see yourself and how others see you. This is important as what you are known for will influence whether people want to work with you.

7. Influence how you enter the market:

In today’s marketplace first impressions count, not just face to face but also online. In fact, it’s now more than likely your first encounter will be online. You need to build your online presence as well as manage your network and contacts in a way that supports your move to a new career.

8. Launch and transition your career leap well:

Landing a new job takes time, but once you are there the effort doesn’t stop. It takes effort and planning to make sure you launch your leap and land it well.   You’ll need to take time to embed the leap, and then expand it so you are well positioned for what comes next in your career.

About Michelle Gibbings

Michelle Gibbings is a workplace expert, who works with global leaders and teams to help them get fit for the future of work. She is the Author of ‘Step Up: How to Build Your Influence at Work’ and ‘Career Leap: How to Reinvent and Liberate your Career’. www.michellegibbings.com

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