Category Archives: Career

How to identify when you are stuck in your career (and what to do about it!)

It can be hard to face the reality that you’re either making progress in your career, marking time, or falling behind…

And if you’re marking time or falling behind, you’re probably stuck!

Here are some “tell-tale” signs that your career may have stalled…

  • You feel stuck in a dead-end job, with limited opportunities to advance.
  • You are waiting for your boss or HR to manage your career.
  • You have interviewed for a promotion a few times but haven’t gotten selected.
  • You love your job but know it’s time to move on.
  • You are already on the hi-po track, but you’re not moving fast enough and you need to stand out in the pile.

If any of these scenarios resonate with you, it’s time to take back control over your career.

Don’t look back with disappointment. 

Take action now…

Start with a shift in mindset to empower yourself to make change happen.

Here seven mindest shifts to get you back on track…

1. Find happiness

Success is hard to come by if you’re not happy in your life and work.  True happiness starts within. Consider who and what are important to you. Carve out time to spend with the special people in your life. Make room for things you like to do. Though you won’t always have work-life balance, there are times when you can create it. When things are going well in your personal life, you can better focus on and create happiness at work. 

    • Who / what is important in my life?
    • Who / what drains my energy and happiness?
    • At what points am I most happy?

2. Commit to a positive, can-do attitude

Negative people are always complaining… “I can’t”, “That’ll never work”, “We’ve always done it this way.” 

Don’t let that be you.

With a positive, can-do attitude, you’ll have more friends and opportunities in your career.

Your attitude impacts not only others but also how you feel about yourself and what you can accomplish.

    • What kind of attitude do I bring to work every day?
    • What negative self-talk keeps me from believing in myself?

3. Set short-term career goals

To consistently make progress, set smaller, shorter-term goals that are stepping stones toward your longer-term career goals. Setting short-term goals will help you make decisions about your work, development priorities, and sought experiences.

    • What do I want to have accomplished by the end of this year?
    • What experience and expertise do I need to gain this year in order to make progress toward my career goals? 

4. Choose to lead

Titles don’t make the leader, your actions and ‘how’ you engage others make you a leader.  You don’t need a title to be accountable for achieving business results or to influence others. Take initiative to speak up or ask the tough questions. Take action when you see something needs to be done. Don’t wait to be asked. Influence others to engage in solving problems and getting things done.

    • What opportunities do I have to step up and be a leader?
    • In what situations might I need to influence others, especially where I don’t have direct authority?

5. Set personal stretch goals

You’ve probably established official goals with your manager. If you want to stand out, you need to go beyond that. Your stated performance goals are really minimum expectations. Strive to hit the ball out of the park, not just run all the bases. Your track record of execution is the foundation for future career opportunities.

    • What can I reasonably accomplish beyond my stated performance goals?

6. Live in the present

Avoid missing out on life because you’re always wondering ‘what if’…. “If only I had this.” “If I just had that job.”  Enjoy ‘life’ where you are. Be grateful. Make the most of what you have and where you are right now. Stop wishing your life away with what could be, and take advantage of ‘what is’. You are given 1,440 minutes each day. Appreciate the gift of each moment.

    • Am I truly appreciating where I am right now?
    • What are all the things I can be grateful for?

7. Take action

Challenge yourself to try each of these strategies.

Find out what a difference your intention will make in fueling your career forward! 

And if you’re serious about taking action and taking back control of your career…

Download my guide for 5 Ways to Breathe New Life Into Your Career.

Go for it!

Unprepared for Leadership?

Congratulations, you’ve just been promoted to a management position. Now, what do you do?

You’re excited about your new role. But, also a little unsettled because you’re trying to figure things out as you go. Unfortunately, your preparation to step into a leadership role has been minimal to non-existent. Or, given the demands of your new role, not adequate. You haven’t gotten the training or coaching that would help you feel well prepared. Most of what you have to go on are the examples from the managers you’ve worked for or other leaders around you, which may or may not be good examples for you to follow.

Diana David struggled with the same dilemma. She’s a leader whose situation is featured in the new book from the Association for Talent Development, Work the Problem: How Experts Tackle Workplace Challenges. She had moved into a new leadership role in a new company and industry. She had poor leadership examples from her past experience. So, she was uncertain as she tried to figure out how to lead.  Diane inherited a team that was somewhat dysfunctional. She also had a performance issue with one of her employees and didn’t know how to address it. She struggled with what to do to resolve these issues.

Her problem?

Diana was focused on the wrong things. She misread the issues and failed to deal with them before getting out of hand. So, the problems with her team just kept getting worse rather than better. 

Like Diana, you find yourself in situations where your team is impacted by some of your leadership mistakes. As a result….

  • They don’t work together as a team.
  • Your team fell short on an expected goal.
  • The decisions you make sometimes come into question.
  • An employee is not thriving in her role and seems to be just putting in time every day rather than doing her best work.

These are leadership issues you’re all too familiar with. Allow them to linger, and you could also impact your future career potential. Problems don’t just go away by themselves.

How should you handle leadership situations such as these? 

What steps can you take right now to turn things around in leading your team?

In my coaching practice, I help leaders solve these issues and develop into great leaders that people love working for.

Get my take on solving these challenges that Diana, and you, often face.
Download an excerpt from my recommendations in the Association for Talent Development’s new book,
Work the Problem: How Experts Tackle Workplace Challenges.