Category Archives: Careers

surviving or thriving in the workplace

… it is possible to heal. It is even possible to thrive. Thriving means more than just an alleviation of symptoms, more than Band-Aids, more than functioning adequately. Thriving means enjoying a feeling of wholeness, satisfaction in your life and work, genuine love and trust in your relationships, pleasure in your body.”
― Ellen Bass

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Are you thriving at work or are you one of the people who finds Monday filled with anxiety?   It seems that many people are finding that work is becoming more stress filled and more anxiety ridden.  Expectations are increasing, more tasks are being added to the daily work expectations and workers are on edge with those new burdens.    What does an employee do?   Continue to absorb the requests of management or find ways to create boundaries that enable success in the workplace?

If you are surviving in the workplace what would you want to see changed?

  • What would it take for that change to take place?
  • What kind of request do you need to make?
  • What would happen if you did make a request for change?   How do you know?

If you are thriving in the work environment what makes it work for you?

  • What enables you to thrive?
  • What do you get to do that you love doing?
  • What keeps the stress manageable?

If you’re not thriving in the workplace what could be done to increase your satisfaction?

  • Do you have a mentor to consult?
  • Do you have a trusted adviser who could help with some ideas?
  • Do you work with a coach?

If work is a daily grind find some support so you can start changing how work is impacting your life.   Take time for breaks to breathe and decompress.  Find time to meditate for a few minutes.  Move, get up and walk to reduce the tension  you experience.

Find a way to thrive in your life.  It will be better for you emotionally, spiritually and physically.  It’s your life, make it your best one.

I will change

“Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.”
― Apple Inc.

It starts when …

 

Maybe you need to look at yourself in a new way this coming year.   Change is about seeing yourself as you want to be not as you are.

Perhaps you are getting tired of the way things are and have been and you’re ready to look at yourself in a new way and the only problem is taking that first step.   For some taking that first necessary step is scary, take it anyway.   Step across the boundary of fear and start seeing yourself in a new way.

You’ll smile on the inside when you make that step.   When you commit to losing those extra pounds.  When you commit to taking responsibility for your life.   When you commit to doing work you love to do.  When you commit to being authentic.   When you make  a choice to live fully.   When you make a commitment and honor it change will come.

Start today.   Look at the mirror and look deeply into the eyes looking back at you.   What do you want those eyes to say?   What do you want your life to mean?   Honor the truth you have within.

my career my choice

“Often people attempt to live their lives backwards, they try to have more things or more money in order to do more of what they want so that they will be happier. The way it actually works is the reverse. You must first be who you really are then do what you need to do in order to have what you want. ”
― Margaret Young

Career choices …

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People are desiring to look for a new job.  A recent survey by Right Management indicates that many people are dissatisfied with the work they are doing right now.   This means there is the potential for a substantial shift in what and where people work.   While the sample size is relatively small it indicates that the work and amount of work that people have to do are not matching up with what employers want their employees to do.

People who desire to look for new work in 2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

Yes, I intend to actively seek a new position.

86%

84%

84%

60%

Maybe, so I’m networking.

 8%

9%

 8%

21%

Not likely, but I’ve updated my resume.

1%

2%

 3%

 6%

No, I intend to stay in current position.

5%

5%

 5%

13%

Source Right Management

Are you one of the many who are polishing up their resume and checking out the want ads for a new position?

If you are you might want to look all around you for ways to make that career transition work for you.

1. Search for your name on Google.   What shows up?  What is your on-line reputation?  Will those who are looking for you find the “right” you on-line.   What does your Facebook account contain?  What do you tweet?   What does your linkedIn profile say about you?   Know what your on-line presence is and know how others see you.

2. Understand “who” you are.   If the job you are in right now isn’t working for your skills and needs aren’t being satisfied by the work you are doing.   Know who you are before you start your job search.   This is a dig deep process into who you are.   Take the time to know your strengths, talents and abilities before you touch up your resume and look for work that you are doing today.   Doing the same work in a different location may not be the best thing for you.

3. Create a strategy.    Have a plan.   Know what you want before you start looking for a new job.   Once you have a clear idea of what you want to do, research job positions that align with your purpose.   What skills are required?  What training is needed?    If you need to develop skills make that part of your plan to get the skills needed to transfer to a new role or career.

4. Tune your resume to match the job  you are looking for.   Often people take adjust their work to match who they are.   That is even given a role with a certain set of expectations they will slowly change the job to match who they are, and do what they like rather than do what is expected.   If you find yourself changing what your role is in your job then you might be in the wrong job.    Do what you like doing and find the job that allows you to do that.   Fighting your way through each day is an indication that you may not fit the job you were hired to do.

5. Adjust.   Looking for a new job is one of adjustments and tuning.  Be willing to make small changes in your resume to match job descriptions and needs.   Be willing to adjust where you are looking and how you are looking.   Find out what is getting you results and what isn’t.

Prepare – Plan – Succeed.

Listen to a TED talk about Careers and jobs.

Seeking a better job or career …

“You must love your work, and not be always looking over the edge of it, wanting your play to begin. And the other is, you must not be ashamed of your work, and think it would be more honorable to you to be doing something else. You must have a pride in your own work and in learning to do it well, and not be always saying, There’s this and there’s that—if I had this or that to do, I might make something of it.”  George Eliot

 

Job Search Are you looking for a new job or career?   Are you looking for ways that will allow you to do what you want rather than doing for the sake of a paycheck?   How important is it for you to love what you do and do what you love to do?

Are you doing work that makes you feel miserable?   If you are, why are you doing it?    The answer to that question is “I have to …”.

How would it feel if you could do something you wanted to do every day?   There isn’t a 100% perfect job or career but you could have a career that is 80% of what you want.    There is likely  something you just don’t want to do that is part of the job requirement and having 80% great work is far better than the 17% great work many people experience.

If it’s time for a change or you want to create a new path of success, check this FREE ebook  Job Search Success today.   Change happens when you make it happen.

 

the inspiration age

“When we love, we always strive to become better than we are. When we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better too.”
Paulo Coelho

The industrial age may be dead yet many are still living in that era.   The industrial age lived by the notion of perfectionism.   The industrial age perfected the art of manufacturing reducing defects so that there were the fewest defects possible.    The age of no-defects infected our schools where achievement blocked the door to inspiration and innovation.

To grow is to fail.  In the industrial age to grow meant to not make mistakes.   When the predominant thought and action is to reduce mistakes, to stop mistakes from occurring we limit our ability to grow and learn.

The education system is based on mass production, minimal failure and following a prescribed set of instructions. The mass production mindset must shift to new consumer demands which is based on experience rather than massive quantities of stuff. The era where material goods were supposed to create happiness is coming to a close. What people are demanding now are enjoyable experiences (Look at FarmVille, World of Warcraft, or Angry Birds).  It doesn’t mean that a whole life will be spent in the pursuit of entertainment, it means that the world of work will need to shift to work life of experience rather than mass production.

What does experience based work look like.

1.  Life without cubicles

2. Work without command and control

3. Worth of people over worth of work

4. Flexibility to meet family demands

5.  Gender equality

6. Dynamic work roles  (as opposed to just one job a variety of interesting work)

7. Meaning in the experience

8. Collaborative contribution

9. Dynamic leadership

10. Work becomes play

What do you think the innovation age will bring?   What will work look like?  What will life really be like in a few years?

Look at this model as explained by one of Google’s employees, would it work in the age of innovation?

Alignment

“Your life has an inner purpose and an outer purpose. Inner purpose concerns Being and is primary. Outer purpose concerns doing and it is secondary. Your inner purpose is to awaken. It is as simple as that. You share that purpose with every other person on the planet – because it is the purpose of humanity. Your inner purpose is an essential part of the purpose of the whole, the universe and its emerging intelligence. Your outer purpose can change over time. It varies greatly from person to person. Finding and living in alignment with the inner purpose is the foundation for fulfilling your outer purpose. It is the basis for true success. Without that alignment, you can still achieve certain things through effort, struggle, determination, and sheer hard work or cunning. But there is no joy in such endeavor, and it invariably ends in some form of suffering.”  Eckhart Tolle

As a coach who works a wide variety of people it is important that the client knows “who” they are.   In many cases they have an idea of who they are that has been shaped by external influences and over time their belief about “who” they are is merely a mask of their real self.    People take assessments to help define better who they are (MBTI, DISC, …) and while those assessments provide value they are often reflections of what other people have declared them to be.   Even 360 degree assessment fail to provide the truth about “who” a person really is.  

 

What happens when people don’t know “who” they are is that they fight against themselves in many cases in terms of career choice, conflicts, learning styles, and working with others.   If people knew “who” they were naturally they would experience greater career, relational, and personal success and fulfillment.   The very things people are looking for are obscured by not knowing who they are.

Jim Collins the author of “Good to Great” writes,  “You can’t manufacture passion or “motivate” people to feel passionate. You can only discover what ignites your passion and the passions of those around you.”     Research indicates that only about 28% of people in their work love what they do.    That means that 72% of the workforce is doing work they don’t really like to do.  Companies spend billions of dollars training and trying to get people to fit their roles and can’t.   When people are not in alignment with “who” they are and what they do they will attempt to mold the job to their core values and ultimately the both the employee and organization suffer.  

For organizations getting the right people in the right seat would make a huge contribution to the bottom line and increase employee satisfaction.    Imagine if you knew what your core values were so that you could find a job that aligns with your strengths and abilities.    Taylor Protocols is one such company that knows how to get the right people in the right seat.     Their “Core Value Index” reliably shows what matters most to people and when they know their core values they are able to:

1. Find out what career is a good fit.

2. Find out how to manage conflict.

3. Find out what creates conflict in their life.

4. Find out their best learning style.

5. Find out how they can make their biggest contribution.

When people are in alignment with “who” they are their level of fulfillment increases, their productivity increase and life gets better.   That is what many people want, a better life and yet they struggle with daily fighting against “who” they truly are.    The CVI is something that can be purchased and the results can be used to fashion a purpose filled life.   It is worth the few dollars to find out what really works in your life.   It is far cheaper than therapy or counseling that often takes place after one has fought against their natural values for years.

Do you know “who” you are?    Are you living with your “values” or against them?

Here’s a short clip about the value of the CVI.

 

 

Vocation

“A society in which vocation and job are separated for most people gradually creates an economy that is often devoid of spirit, one that frequently fills our pocketbooks at the cost of emptying our souls.”  – Sam Keen

Vocation means “calling”, a call to do something with your life.  Now, what most of us do is get a job and work at that job for a number of years.   The job becomes a means to an end, a way to pay for the things we want and for many people something rather meaningless.   At some point it becomes clear that the work you are doing has no connection to your strengths or desires.

Laurence Boldt the author of “How to find the work you Love” points out the fact that it is more important to do work that matters rather than doing work for the sake of work.   For the “boomers” work held the notion that you committed yourself to an organization and the organization provided long-term employment for that commitment.   In the 90’s that changed and many “boomers” found themselves being laid off from work they did out of routine more than out of personal purpose.    Technology shifted the domain of work from hands to head.   Those who were in jobs that were manual in nature found that those jobs were easily exported overseas where the cost of labor was less expensive.

The newer generations know that organizations won’t commit themselves to their employees so they have become much more mobile and shift jobs more often.

Still there is an issue.  Do you work for money or do you work because the work you are doing has meaning for you?    Does the work you do involve the use of your strengths and creative talents?   If it doesn’t the connection to the work you do will be small.    Most people start their careers with hope and a lot of energy.  If that work doesn’t match who they are then it will take more energy from the individual than they can manufacture and it will result in diminished results over time.   We can’t continually do work that has low or no meaning as it takes more energy than we can supply.     You’ve seen people who have become tired of the work they are doing.  They have lost passion, the energy, the desire and the reason to come to work excited.   There is nothing there for them and yet they continue to come to work and they do it because they feel that is the only way for them to make money.

Laurence Boldt claims that “doing the work you love means living  your philosophy”.     It means that if you are able to do what you love you will be in alignment with your values and that will lead to happiness.     If you are living for the weekends then it is likely you are not doing the work that is meaningful for you.

How do you get out of the trap?

1. Define who you are.

2. Find out what your strengths are.

3. Find out what you value.   What do you want to contribute?

4. Create a plan that will allow you to do work that matters to you.

5. Execute the plan.
Monty Python takes a unique look at vocations. Through the unique lens of humor we can see that many people are trapped in careers that provide no meaning or joy.

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Are you doing the best thing for you and your life?