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Tips for the Managewhich: Is What I’m Doing Resume-Worthy?

Photo by Thana Thaweeskulchai

Photo by Thana Thaweeskulchai

Career Management groups are filled with people who haven’t progressed in their careers, and those are the folks who are having the toughest time landing new positions.   Many of those fall into the category of being happy that they had a job, and so they did whatever was necessary to keep it.   This is fear-based decision-making at it’s finest, and I say at it’s finest because the decision probably wasn’t that conscious for most of them.

Many of us have gotten into the habit of scarcity thinking and fear-based decision-making, and it didn’t start in the last 18 months.  I think it’s been going on since the economy tanked in 2001.   If you don’t know what I am talking about when I say “scarcity thinking” and “fear-based decision-making,” here are some examples of self-talk:

  • “It’s hard to find a job.”
  • “If I don’t [fill in the blank here], I’ll lose my job.”
  • “It isn’t any better anywhere else.”

What’s your roadblock?

Assuming that you like what you do and you’re doing the right thing in the right place, here are some fundamental career management you should be asking yourself at the start of any new assignment:

  • Does this take me closer to or farther away from my ultimate vision?  And, if the answer is farther away, is this a stepping stone for something better?
  • Will the process of accomplishing this [whatever this is] be an addition to my resume?
  • And, the Seinfeld question,  the Career Management version of Elaine’s “Is he sponge-worthy?)…  Is this opportunity worth expending a limited and valuable resource (e.g. your time)?

If you’re in a career that requires thinking and growing, and that would be most of you in the white collar world, take a good look at your accomplishments over the last five years.  What would someone say about the trend of your career or your progress?  If the answer is, “OMG, it’s a flat line!” what support structures are you going to put in place to get you moving upward and onward?

What happens if you do end up in a roll that isn’t resume worthy?

One- start looking for something else.  Contrary to what that nay-saying voice keeps telling you about unemployment numbers, the top talent are still getting jobs, and many of them are doing it without losing their previous jobs first.  It doesn’t hurt to explore your options.  So, do it.

Two- negotiate this with your management.  You don’t have to do this in a way that implies that this [whatever it is] is beneath you or that you’re unwilling to do it in the short term.  There are points to be made about the benefits to them for growing you.  And, it doesn’t hurt for there to be a little discomfort in the air that you’re one of the ones who will take action should your situation not improve.

Be Your Best You Today,

Carolann Jacobs

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