“How do you manage your career?” That was the question posed to me last week when I was interviewed by Alison Hinson on her radio show Money Talks (WMPG, Portland). The show topic was “when the pink slip is yours” but our discussion quickly migrated to careers and how to recession proof your job.
Too many people spend precious little time thinking about their careers and even fewer put in the needed time, sacrifice and money managing their career requires. Those that do are usually happier, enjoy a more rewarding career, and are more valued by their employer–a great position to be in when the lay off lists are generated.
Manage your career or someone will manage it for you–and you’ll probably won’t like their choices. That’s the advice I regularly give. Continue your education; stay current in your profession; volunteer for different assignments and projects; position yourself as the “go-to” person in your organization. Don’t depend on your boss to show you the way. Be self reliant and your own advocate. Take control of your career. Make yourself so valuable that you’d be the last person to get laid off. But if you should be, it will be easier to find your next job.
Managing your career is not just a means of protecting your current job. Your career should be your passion, your professional focus. It is what excites you and drives you. It is much more than a job. And you know you’ve arrived when you get paid to work in your career. Take control. It is in your hands.