Whether you’re aiming for an elevated position at a new job or want to move up in your current company, in order to do this thing right, you’ve got to think strategically. As I like to say ‘You gotta do the work to do the work.” (Even if you’re not jockeying for a promotion - these actions will help you be a better employee, leader and coworker.)
Do you ever feel like you could totally crush your career if you just knew where to start?
I know that feeling all too well (the struggle is beyond real!). You wake up and know that there's something more, you just can't quite put your finger on it or you can totally put your finger on it but you have no idea where/how/why to do anything about it. You just wish you had a magic wand that *POOF* showed you exactly to how to create the friggin' rad ass career you thought you'd have by now....
I used to struggle with that feeling too (umm hello 3 major career shifts) - but through all those career shifting shenanigans I figured something out:
Awesome careers don't just happen. You have to make them happen. You gotta put it together like that capsule wardrobe you've been dreaming about! But here's the thing (and I know from experience) - it doesn't have to be difficult. You absolutely CAN make your career into exactly what you want.
I don’t want it to take anyone else years to figure this out the way I did!
That’s why next week on Thursday Feb 7th , at 12 PM Pacific, I’m hosting a free live masterclass to show you how! I'm not selling anything, this is 100% pitch-free. I just know that a lot of you want to, but are struggling to, set goals and create career plans and this is absolutely the time of year to get to plannin'!
I want to help you do ALL THE THINGS in 2019 so I'm doing this masterclass with Q&A just for you.
In the masterclass, you’ll learn:
The ONE thing you need to have to make 2019 your career year (hey I should trademark that!)
The four critical steps you need to take (you can absolutely do 4)
How to set the right goals (and totally crush them)
How to plan it out: FREE Career Goal Planner included (yup - free. planner. Nuff said)
Plus LIVE Q&A session so you can get all your questions answered about career goals, promotions, climbing the ladder (& more)
See you in class!
I work with really, really smart people who for some reason don’t believe me when I tell them that 70-80% of all jobs are never posted. Yup 70-80%! What that means is that sending your resume into a black hole is going to be WAY less effective than having one meaningful conversation with someone.
I try to impress on my clients that networking is imperative. That it’s a must-do. Now, I know you hate networking. Everyone hates networking. But if you look at it as a way to help other people by connecting them to that person who can get them their dream gig… boom
- it becomes a fun, heart-warming, do good activity and not a smarmy sell-yourself, make it rain business cards, gross-fest.
That said, even if you get in the right mindset about it, official networking events can be really intimidating. It is easier to network at smaller, less official event - but what do you do when you need to go to an “official” Networking Event?
Here are my 20 tips to make these events valuable, way less awkward and yes… even fun! (I know crazy right?)
Are you letting your Linkedin do your networking for you? No?! Then grab my free cheatsheet “Make Your LinkedIn Work for You: Top 10 Recruiter Approved LinkedIn Musts”
20 Tips to Make Networking Events Way Less Sucky:
1) Set a goal to have 1, 2 or 3 meaningful conversations… TOTAL.
2) Yes, wear the dumb name tag (on the right side if possible) it’s really helpful for
those who struggle with names.
3) Remind yourself of the value you offer!
4) Smile, but not all Joker creepy-like. Keep it genuine.
5) This is the time to be your best self and to listen. Meaningful networking
Means offering value and help to others, not just grabbing at anyone who can help you.
6) Say “hi” to anyone you know to get comfortable in the space and to get chatting - but keep it short and sweet.
7) Take a lap around the space. Check out who’s where, what’s where, etc.
8) Keep your right hand free for shaking hands (AKA keep your left hand free to hold the booze!)
9) The key to connecting is listening, asking open-ended questions and genuinely listening to the answers. Start with questions like, “What brought you here tonight?”
10) Offer your valuable help! After chit chatting for a bit, ask, “How best can I help you?” or “What’s your biggest pain-point right now?”
11) Introduce any people you know to other people you know.
12) If you’ve forgotten someone’s name (and they didn’t bother with the name tag) - be honest about it: “We met last year at the vodka launch, right? Of course, I remember you, but I’m sorry I’ve forgotten your name.”
13) Have your business cards in an easily grabbable spot (yes, actual cards).
14) It’s ok to break into conversations, especially in larger groups. Go ahead - introduce yourself.
15) Ending one on one conversations can be awkward - just hand over your card in a lull and say that you’d love to keep in touch, learn more etc. or you can say that you want to connect with a few more people before the event ends and ask for their card before scurrying off
16) Even if it’s a boozy event, it’s ok not to drink! Or, if appropriate - go to town! Just beware of punch mouth.
17) Avoid sticking to the walls with your face in your phone. Get yourself out there!
18) Try not to go to these things on an empty stomach - because you want to focus on the conversations, not the tray of shrimp balls
19) If you can introduce yourself to the organizer of the event, do it!
20) Go with the goal of helping others and being “authentic” means you’ll form more genuine connections and build meaningful relationships.
- - -
Phew. I know that was a lot right? But look, I don’t care what industry you work in, what role you have, what your goals are -- you HAVE TO network. There are so many ways to network - find one that works for you. Totally online? Fine. Only in person? Great. Speed networking at hyper-specific conferences? You do you. Just do something.
Yours in career goodness-
The majority of my clients come to me out of fear: Fear of the unknown, fear of judgement, fear of …. fear. I find myself SO OFTEN asking “Are you sure that you don't know what you want to do in your career, or are you afraid to admit what you actually want?” So, I thought I’d follow up with a post on exactly HOW some real-life ladies pushed past the fear and made their way into their dream careers!
Ahhhhhh good 'ol "Back to School" time. Unlike Trix, it's not just for kids!
Remember your OG ‘Back to School’ days? Dreams of colorful pens, clean notebooks, new books (with that particular smell). New locker combo, new book bag, new desk, then soon enough new dorm mate, new professors, new… everything.
Remember thinking “THIS semester I’m going to buckle down and DO it!” Everything gets put ever-so-neatly into the planner, colorful tabs and all. The calendar is meticulously populated. The new books are covered… with book covers, the clean notebooks soon…. aren’t. The homework has lagged, the new books are still mostly un-cracked because “life” got it the way.
Remember how it was? Except for that one class. The one you really liked, but had “nothing” to do with your major. It was fun, but really…. It didn’t “count.” Even though it was the only class you got perfect attendance in - and did ALL the extra credit - and you thought the final was super easy (even though it looks like a bunch of people struggled with it - what was with that?) I mean, it WAS the best class ever but SO not on your career ‘track.’
Somehow this pattern follows us into our professional lives. We get all excited about a new job, a new role, a new company and we swear it will be different… until it isn’t.
That job over there, the one that looks fun and interesting and easy and challenging but in the best way…. but it’s not just on your career ‘track’ - it’s not what you were trained to do, or got your degree in, or people think is worthwhile… so you don’t give it more brainspace. Until this time of year.
If you were raised in the American public school system…. (whether you’ve got kids or not), September is “Back to School” season. The time of year when new beginnings feel possible.
Don’t misunderstand me - I believe it’s ALWAYS a good time to hit restart, to make the changes you want - but I know that there’s just something about these weeks in fall that just FEEL new-starty. For many people, it feel even more so than New Years.
If it takes it Back to School “season” to make you feel motivated to make a change - do it! Learn the new thing! Take the new job! Figure out what you REALLY want and go for it!
Lucky for you this doesn't have to take place in a classroom (although it absolutely can if that’s your jam). The wonders of technology will never cease to amaze and have made it possible for you to do a little learnin' of your own - all while sportin’ your rattiest jammies.
You can take classes to beef up your skills.
You can join a writing program and finally learn how to write that book.
You can learn from the ultimate pros and learn something that may spark a career change!
There’s a whole wide world of learning and growing to take advantage of this back to school season. Just don’t forget an apple for the teacher!!
If you want some one on one teaching to learn how to ditch the fear and design a career you friggin' love - I invite you to go ahead and book your free consult call before the bell rings!
So many clients come to me out of fear.
They say things like:
“I know I need a new career but I’m afraid”
“I’m afraid I will never find my passion”
“I want a new job, but I’m afraid I won’t get one”
“I need to do something I love but I’m afraid it won’t happen”
“I deserve a promotion but I’m afraid to ask”
“I want to switch departments but I’m afraid they’ll say no.”
SO. MUCH. FEAR.
All the fears. Which are totally rational by the way. Making any change is scary - making career changes, where your livelihood is at stake? Freakin’ terrifying.
I wish I had a magic wand and I could make their fear disappear. But I don’t and I can’t. Does that mean that they are stuck with this career crippling fear forever?
Absolutely not. IF they decide to tackle it head on. But howwwwwww? Confronting your fear can be… frightening. How’s that for meta? Follow the steps below and you’ll be well on your way to moving past those big ‘ol fear blocks.
1. Congratulate yourself for considering change:
Honestly! It’s a big deal! So many people never even get to the point where they move past being unhappy to actually making a decision to do something about it. You’re ahead of the pack… already!
2. Accept that you’re scared, acknowledge the fear:
Fear is real and it’s intense. Trying to pretend you’re not scared doesn’t help anyone/anything. Once you sit back, acknowledge that you’re scared, but decide to move forward anyways…. That’s where shit gets real!
3. Visualize the outcome of NOT taking any action:
A good friend clued me into this concept when I was having trouble moving past something because I was frightened. And man ‘o man was she on to something!! Find a quiet space, clear your head for a second and just visualize. Visualize what will happen if you do nothing. How will you feel 1 month, 6 months, 1 year from now. The results of inaction are far more likely to be scarier than anything moving forward might bring!
4. Take your time: be intentional:
Now that you’ve decided to make something happen don’t just go running around the office yelling “BURN IT DOOOOWWWWN!” Take a few more moments to decide on a plan of action. You don’t have to have it all figured out, but you do need at least a broad-strokes plan. You want to make your next move carefully and intentionally. But here’s the cool thing… your next move is tiny. Like sooo little. Shhh tiiiiinnnnyyy…….
5. Commit to doing one very small thing towards the change that scares you:
I mean tiny. Minuscule. Really freaking small. Something like: putting some time on your calendar to research salaries for that role you have your eye on. Just block out 30 mins on your calendar. That’s it.
Write out a list of 5 people who inspire you. On a post-it. Stick it on your desk. That’s it. Just 5.
Find an article to IM the manager of that cool department you want to break into. That’s all. Just find the article.
One TINY step will lead to another and another and soon enough you’ll have taken one actual full sized step!
You my friend are now officially on your way and walking through all that fear! Well done you.