Harness the natural urge to reflect at the end of the year by reading an outstanding new book that will help you articulate your interests and desires, and take concrete steps to achieve them.
In What Next? The Complete Guide To Taking Control of Your Working Life, author Barbara Moses provides worksheets, deft questioning and real-world examples to help readers use reflective time to conduct a candid self assessment to discover, or possibly rediscover, the underlying career themes in your professional life. Don’t discount your earliest work experiences, Moses says. “First jobs, much like first romances, are pivotal experiences that provoke intensely positive or negative emotions.” It is in our early career years that our life-long career themes begin to emerge. But we must be attuned to them in order to unearth them, she argues.
“Unfortunately, we often forget these career themes, just as we lose our images and stories of who we want to be,” Moses says, adding that this sense that “something is missing” is a frequent complaint heard by career counselors from clients in their 30s, 40s and beyond.
To decipher your true career themes, Moses suggests asking yourself probing questions, including:
What were your earliest desires that drew you to your work or profession?
Are those desires still true of you today?
Does your work allow you to express those desires?
Identify two or more work experiences that you really liked.
What features did the work have? For example, did you work with smart people, have a boss who trusted you, enjoyed the fast pace, were always learning, or fervently believed in the project or product?
Armed with thoughtful answers to these questions, Moses recommends assessing yourself against her eight key motivators to determine your major and minor motivational types ï¿½ examples include sociability seeker or a people person, career builders, or personal developers who feel a higher calling to make a meaningful difference. Moses also walks readers through an examination of each type to help you learn what are your key motivators.
This brisk, enthusiastic but realistic book can be just the catalyst you need to clear your desk and your mind to think deeply about where you really want to be in your career. This IMPACT Select resource is available in the Books Section on the IMPACT Website.