What matters to you the most? If you can’t answer this… why?
Essentially this step is about understanding who you are, what is important to you and when you are at your best. It’s about being clear on what your individual purpose is and what living a fulfilled life then looks like. Honestly, this is the hardest part – most people can’t readily articulate this and that’s ok, though unlocking it is so incredibly powerful, not just professionally, but also personally. It will make sense of a lot of things in your life.
A lot of people who really crack this, work with someone who is skilled in coaching as the answers really do lie within you – they just need to be coaxed out. It doesn’t have to cost you a lot, though it’s money well spent as everything springboards from this.
Once you’re clear on this, the next step in knowing yourself is being able to demonstrate your skills and achievements. This can also be a difficult task if you don’t know what your strengths are. Understanding your strengths is so important in working out what environments will make you feel the most fulfilled and happy. It’s proven that people who use their strengths every day experience greater quality of life and more engagement, particularly at work, and why wouldn’t you want that when you spend so much time there?
There are a number of personal profiling assessments which a lot of people use to help them with getting to know themselves better. For some tools and resource on this – jump onto our website. There is a mix of freebies as well as the offer of working with subject matter experts in this area.
Do you believe things just happen to you, or do you have a hand in what happens?
This is the difference in a fixed versus a growth mindset. If you think things just happen to you, then you’re your biggest problem! Every morning you have a number of choices, what time do you get up? What you have for breakfast? Which bus you catch? Small things, though they are all choices you make whether you consciously know it or not.
There are a load of resources available on the benefits of shifting and staying in a growth mindset which affects how you show up every single day. An example of a growth versus fixed mindset is how you ‘show up’ at an interview – are you viewing it as a two-way discussion or just an interviewer assessing you? Leading with a growth mindset will impact so many areas of your life and ensure you have more confidence and positivity.
What’s your rocking chair moment? … what will be the thing that you sit on that balcony with your loved ones and reflect on as your version of career success?
So many people who we meet are just thinking about their next role and not the bigger picture of where they want to be long term. It’s an easy trap to fall into with the pressures of everyday life that you are dealing with now and it’s so tempting to think tomorrow is
Are you discerning over who you socialise with? Why wouldn’t you think hard about the ‘company’ you keep?
The next step is to find the company that will utilise and develop your strengths and that aligns with your values. So many people think it’s all about trying to sell yourself to a potential employer though honestly, that couldn’t be further from the truth. It should always be a two-way discovery session with the decision lying equally in both camps.
Embrace the opportunity to interview the prospective employer, at the same time as they interview you. How?
— Know yourself; only by knowing who you are, where your strengths lie and what is important to you will you be able to ask the right questions to identify if a company will be the right fit
— Do your homework - research the companies that you want to work for, conduct a SWOT of their products/services, conduct a mystery shop and critically assess their position vs their competitors within the market, essentially ensure you are able to have a meaningful and commercial conversation
— Speak to people you know within the company to understand the culture and their values
— Network with people connected to the organisations of potential interest so that you can proactively place yourself on their radar.
This doesn’t always have to happen when you’re actively looking for a role. Once you have spent the time defining your own purpose and understand what is important to you, prepare a shortlist of companies which may align to these. At the end of the day, why wouldn’t you want to work somewhere where your enjoyment levels could be through the roof? It’s your choice, you just need to invest some time in it!
When was the last time that you consciously met someone new?
It takes energy, it can be hard work and it takes time – though if you don’t have a network, the chances are, you are going to struggle to find the next role, the one after that and so on.