How to Manage Your Career Like a Boss -My 7 tips

06 Jan How to Manage Your Career Like a Boss -My 7 tips

Are you in charge of your career….or is it in charge of you?

The recruitment and the labour market is changing and evolving….. Thank God! The traditional recruitment model just doesn’t work anymore. Its broken!

Working as a consultant in my business, I have had senior managers and CEO’s ask me for my advice on improving their traditional recruitment processes…..and it always felt BLAH! Because I didn’t resonate with the outdated way of doing things. I had nothing really new to add to it. It was just tweaking the ways it has always been done: employers have all the power, candidates strive to be people they are not to impress employers, you expend energy into your applications….and don’t even get feedback….its riddled with inauthenticity and I find it a completely unempowered way to go about recruitment!

Its 2015 – not 1985!

The new workforce…..

The workforce is becoming more transient – permanent work is elusive….in Australia, we are fast moving to a contingent, contract dominant workforce. The balance of power is shifting…..back to YOU.

By 2020 it is expected that 40% of the workforce will be contractors!

Interestingly, LinkedIN just published their 2016 workforce trends report, and that suggested that the number one priority for 32% of employers is employee retention. This kind of felt like a slight contradiction to me….maybe its time to stop fighting it, and start embracing it….just a little, slowly we go…..

Let’s look at the reality….for you as an employee, not an employer (that’s a whole other issue I will deal with another time)

Does being a professional ‘contractor’, who manages their own career excite you? Or scare you?….

Change always incites emotional responses. Some positive, some negative. Knowing what you feel is half the battle….then it’s how you react to the emotions that cements how the change affects you.

I think the changes to the labour market are a wonderful thing.

It’s a welcome change to the status quo. Power to the people. YOU can decide where you go, how long for, what you do, who you work for, what you can learn….and how you will GROW…so that you can position yourself for your next opportunity. That takes all that power away from employers and place it back with you, the talent.

Sounds fabulous right? It is.

But you do need to have a new approach to managing your own careers.

Your career is your responsibility.

Here are my top 7 tips to manage your career like a BOSS

1. CLARIFY YOUR LONG TERM GOALS first – what you want to do, who you want to work for, what problems you want to help them solve, what you need to learn and what opportunities there are in the market to do all that. When you have articulated where you want to end up in the long term (5-10 years), you can then look at the steps you need to take, the opportunities you need to secure to build the bridge you need to cross.

2. MANAGE YOUR REPUTATION – Your reputation is your ticket to the next gig – Be the best you can be. Wherever you are right now – own it and be awesome at it. Leave a legacy. Even if you don’t like your current role. You’re not staying there, so it doesn’t matter. Learn what you can, make a positive difference and then leverage it all. Think about how you can make the biggest impact in your current role, right now. It doesn’t have to be life changing…but it does need to impress your supervisors and managers – so that they will give you glowing testimonials and recommendations. In the new transient workforce your reputation is critical. Manage any misunderstandings, do your best to resolve issues with co-workers and be the bigger person, admit mistakes, show accountability.

3. BE ACCOUNTABLE – own mistakes, take responsibility and be honourable and honest. You also need to be accountable for your own career success. You can’t blame people for not giving you an opportunity. You need to seek it out and hunt it down.

4. BRAND YOURSELF – package yourself up, create a brand, put a bow on it and start pitching! Your resume and LinkedIn profile need to be brilliant. Head and shoulders above the rest! Focus on your value, how you solve problems….what your achievements are, career highlights, when have you saved employers money? Time? Improved operations? Give stats, facts and not just responsibilities. Contact me for a free resume and LinkedIn assessment of your awesome status.

5. UPSKILL AND DEVELOP YOUR QUALIFICATIONS -. The ‘onus’ (in the new labour market) will not on your employer to fund your professional development (although that is definitely welcomed and encouraged) is on YOU. You need to invest time and money into your brand, education and self-marketing. Learn skills in sales and negotiation. You will be selling yourself and negotiating your value much more frequently. Effective communication skills are paramount to your success

6. ENGAGE WITH TECHNOLOGY – there are numerous platforms which you need to engage with to market your brand and secure new contracting and employment opportunities. Obviously LinkedIN is essential, as are other sites which specialise in contingent labour hire, such as Nvoi. – which make it easier for you to be a transient employee or contractor. There are many more industry specific ones that are great. Google a lot!

7. STRATEGISE – When looking for your next opportunity, don’t just take what you can get. Have a plan and execute it. Think of your career in the longer term and refer back to your goals in step 1 – is this opportunity or contract helping you to get to that ultimate goal? Will you be learning what you need to? Will you be growing your network the right way?

The above tips are the tip of the iceberg.. but as this is a change in thinking for many….I think that is enough food for thought on the matter for now.

Start thinking of yourself as an expert in your field. Think about your value. What are you worth to someone? What problems will you solve? Who will you solve them for?

Its 2016… start changing your mindset now, so you are 2020 ready. The change is already here….it’s just going to start happening a lot faster.

I am working on some awesome new programs to help you… this space….

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To your UNLIMITED success,

Seona Craig

Director / Career Advisor and Personal Branding Strategist


0423 171 234

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Twitter handle: @youunlimited_au