Tag Archives: #careermanagement

What completely engages you in your work?

imagesWhat is it you find yourself doing when you’re completely engrossed and the time just passes by and you have to remind yourself to stop to eat and before you know it the morning has turned into evening and you can still continue with what you’re doing into the night. For me, lately it’s writing and I say lately as I suppose part of me wonders if this is just a passing phase and if my thought process will dry up soon.

Why do I want to write? Because as Colin Firth said in his role as George V1 in the ‘Kings Speech’ ‘I have a voice’ and I’m discovering writing to be a great expression of that, and being the reflective soul I am, writing is a more natural medium for me to get my thinking out there, as opposed to impromptu speaking– as Mark Twain once said ‘it takes me three weeks to prepare for an impromptu speech’

My professional/personal development is important to me, as I expect it is for many people and for some of you it will be an important perk of the job, i.e. you’re fortunate that support to continue to progress and develop your career is part of your reward package. However what do you do if the training budget has been frozen, or like me you need to fund your own learning and development or you want to develop skills for something you aspire to do in the future and can’t get buy in from your HR department to approve this because they can’t see how it will support you in your current role and actually you don’t really want them to know about it anyway.

The good news is there are ways to gain skills that will serve you in progressing your career path in the direction of your choice and this can be done in a manner that fits into your life/work and is cost effective.

For example once I knew I wanted my next career to be about supporting individuals in their career learning and development (In a previous life I worked in Investment Banking) I undertook studies in Career Coaching and Career Management at Birbeck University. This was a significant investment but knowing the work I aspired to do, I knew to be able to support others I needed a good theoretical foundation that I could then personalise to my client needs. This has led me to where I am and I’m thoroughly enjoying my client work and learn so much through my clients.

And so to continue my own learning and development and move my career in the direction I want to, I’ve identified that I want to develop my research and development skills along with my writing skills and for the moment I’m not going to invest in any specific training to do this but instead I’m adapting a hands on approach of just getting stuck in and building a little of this into my day/week .

The purpose of this is to become a specialist in my area by staying up to date with what’s going on in my industry and discovering new ways of doing things and as a result be able to support my clients in a manner that draws on expertise, is fresh, interesting, creative, innovative and fun.

Other areas I want to develop are my technical ability, and my marketing skills – in the past I have to admit to being a little phobic about technology. So, to facilitate this development need, I built my first websites and I’m learning all about social media and I have to say I’m really enjoying it and of course it’s a double whammy because along the way I’m developing my business and my business skills – so a win/win really.

If I can do it so can you, just think about what you’re doing when you’re completely engaged and build more of this into your day and think about the skills you want to develop and you’ll find ways to take a hands on approach to make this happen.

And what if as an aspiring writer my thought process does dry up and I develop writer’s block as they say, well that’s when the romantic side of me kicks in and I think I’ll take myself off to a beautiful location, perhaps a French or Italian home that  has a vineyard for a backyard… My creative juices are sure to flow once more – or it might just seem that way a vintage or two later!

Evolving Careers Players can help you manage and develop your career. We deliver 121 career coaching, group learning and development, and outplacement services. We devise community forum theatre, corporate drama workshops and role-play scenarios. http://www.evolvingcareerslayers.com Get in touch to discuss your needs: carmel@evolvingcareersplayers.com

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Creating a Fulfilling Career

jumping-out-of-bedCan we really create a career that’s fulfilling, motivating, inspiring that makes us want to jump out of bed in the morning and keeps us sustained throughout the day, week, and month? Well actually yes, and I can say that because that’s exactly what I’ve done for myself and I know quite a few people who have also done it.

Coming from a background in Investment banking, which I actually really enjoyed while I was doing it, which was as much to do with being in a good environment and working with great people as well as the job itself. It did become mundane towards the end as I was doing it for so long and so the time came to move on, but move on to what – that was the million dollar question.

It did take time to discover what that was but eventually I arrived to where I am now, by way of a number of excellent courses, not least my Postgraduate studies in Career Coaching and Career Management with Birbeck University and I know it sounds very cliché but if there was one life changing moment, undertaking this course would be it in terms of where I am now in my career and lifestyle.

My learning and development has always been important to me and now I was in a position where I was working with individuals and organisations on their learning and development programmes. The 121 work came easy but I felt inhibited delivering group work – I suddenly became quite wooden! To overcome this I undertook a foundation year in Drama along with several shorter acting and directing courses and actually a little drawing and painting too!

It was then I had my eureka moment, the techniques, structures and methods of theatre are significant in the world of career learning and development. The unique skills set performing artists have had to develop in their craft brings learning alive. This is ‘learning by doing’ enabling the practice of new skills sets and behaviours in a safe, supportive, challenging and creative environment.

I was now in a position to combine my knowledge and experience of career learning and development with drama-based techniques. This enables the individuals and teams I work with to be more active, spontaneous and flexible, freeing their minds to use their imagination in being inventive and original. The intrinsic nature of this work helps foster creativity, team spirit and emotional intelligence.

This was a double whammy for me, because along with a love of learning and development I am also passionate about performing and visual arts and now I’ve created a career that embodies what’s most important to me. I work with interesting people helping them manage and develop their careers and I work with a team of performing and visual artists in delivering the work – A win/win!

If you’re at a stage in your life where you’re no longer finding your career fulfilling, consider the following:

What are your most important core value? e.g. for me its the importance of learning and development and this is through many mediums – reading, courses, cultural experiences …

What are your best attributes? – e.g. kindness, curiosity, sense of humour …

What are your most unusual characteristics? – e.g. I consider myself to be adventurous – loving new experiences, brave – I’ve taken risks, humble – more behind the scenes kind of person – loving research and development, directing …

What are your best mental abilities? e.g. empathy, the ability to see both the bigger and smaller picture, the ability to think laterally and understand new ideas …

What are your best social skills? e.g. friendly, easy company, interested in people – welcoming, …

What are your best business skills? e.g. relationship building, flexibility and adaptability, communication skills …

And what are your most important interests? e.g. for me its performing and visual arts, travel, discovering new things …

Answering these questions will hopefully help you create a better life/work balance, by ensuring you embrace what’s important to you both in your work and your life outside of work, and if like me, you may want to consider a new career which embodies the things that are important to you, these questions will hopefully provide a good stepping off point to begin exploring your journey to a new and more fulfilling career.

Evolving Careers Players can help you manage and develop a career that’s more fulfilling to you, and if its time to move onto something new, we can help you discover what that is and support you in taking the steps to make it happen. We deliver 121 career coaching, group learning and development, and outplacement services. We devise community forum theatre, corporate drama workshops and role-play scenarios. http://www.evolvingcareerslayers.com Get in touch to discuss your needs: carmel@evolvingcareersplayers.com