In Career Management, Focus on the Desired Outcome

By Scot Herrick | Job Search

Aug 14

“Changing jobs right now is so risky. I need to put managing my career on hold.”

“It’s a tough job market and there is lots of competition. I don’t think I could change careers right now.”

“I want to hang on to what I have even if I’m not happy. It’s better than being laid off.”

Losing sight of our career management goals

Sound like you? Career management is both an easy and tough business. It’s easy because there are simple steps that can lead you to the right career for you now, but hard because implementing what you want is difficult.

When we are focused on the tactical aspects of our job and the internal politics of the company, we lose site of our goals. It is the alligator and the swamp all over again. When we focus on the here and now, we can become apathetic to our career goals or ridden with anxiety in trying to achieve them.

Getting Career Management back on track

One of the ways to get out of the morass is to change the picture in our head from one of where we are now to where we want to be. Focusing on the desired outcome of our career goals (which isn’t our life goal, just our career goals we want to achieve in the next 18 months or so) changes the picture in your head.

Getting the right picture in your head allows you to craft simple tasks to be completed to get to the new picture in your head about the outcome of your work. Completing a few of the simple tasks to get you to the outcome you want changes the dynamic of reaching the goal – you’ve accomplished a few tasks that have helped and that helps you do more.

It is easy to go with the flow instead of with your goal. Change the picture in your head to what your desired outcome looks like to you and then create small tasks that help you desire to reach your goal.

How do you change the picture in your head when you are going the wrong way? Anyone using picture boards? Anything else?

  • Deanna McNeil says:

    I have been thinking about this a lot lately. I *finally* put pen to paper and wrote down some goals, a huge first for myself. And the picture in my head is gaining clarity.

    I basically at this point give myself 5 minutes every morning to think about these goals and I mentally ‘suit up’ before heading in to work.

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