What is the recipe for successful achievement? To my mind there are just four essential ingredients: Choose a career you love, give it the best there is in you, seize your opportunities, and be a member of the team. ~ Benjamin F. Fairless
Before you start your career search or plan to change your current career path; it is crucial for you to complete a self-reflection of how you want your career path to manifest. Breakdown your career plan beyond position details and income. Identify a top ten list of what you want your next position on your career path to provide you.
Career Path Development Exercise and Questions
- Take a personality test.
- Career Changers, review your resume and determine what your top experiences from your previous positions were. Are they potential transferable experiences to your next role?
- New Grads, what classes did you enjoy and excel in during school? Are there possible positions that will provide you the opportunity to expand your learning and experience in that area?
- Were there community service experiences that brought you fulfillment that can be transferred over to a professional position?
- Was there a success story that you observed or read that you need to revisit and research how you can have similar success outcomes?
“Read, read, read.” ~ William Faulkner
Taking time to read can result in stress reduction, increase of knowledge, and creation of goals. During your career search it is important to schedule time to read. Challenge yourself to pursue a variety of topics that range from politics, current events, entertainment, living, or technology on an ongoing basis. Reading is your vehicle to being diverse in conversation and perspective personally and professionally. It can reveal a new professional position or business opportunity. Reading is a cultured activity that will keep your mind energized with fresh thoughts and calls to action.
Suggested Reading Connectors
- Join a book club.
- Participate in a tweet chat about a book.
- Read a book that is associated to a movie or play that you enjoy.
- Create a daily reading routine.
- Identify a reading spot to retreat to frequently.
- Declare that reading discloses answers and insight that you are seeking.
Creating a lasting first impression is vital to your career search. The duration of a first impression can range from seven to thirty seconds. First impressions can be sealants of progress or refuse during the interview process. First impression triggers are components of your personal brand. A few first impression triggers includes your social media profiles, your voicemail, your email, your hand shake, and your attire. Be cognizant of your efforts of maintaining your personal brand.
In lieu of a resume submission, a potential employer may request links to your social media profiles to review how you choose to present yourself globally. Your verbiage, pictures, videos, and overall content can increase or decrease your candidacy relevancy for a position. Post wisely and tactfully, even after you have secured your desired position. You do not want to be prone to loosing your job based upon inappropriate posts.
During your career search, your voicemail should be professional and clear to understand. Your voicemail should not feature the latest music sensation nor have background noise.
Email addresses can be too revealing of lifestyle choices and personal details sometimes. Keeping your email address basic and simple is a consistent recommendation by hiring managers and recruiters.
Your handshake and attire display confidence and an unspoken understanding that you know how to carry yourself in your desired work environment. Your attire needs to be tasteful while using all appropriate under garments, accessories, levels of perfume usage, and overall body coverage. Take the time to research handshake styles and wardrobe interview essentials and determine if your handshake or wardrobe needs to be revised.
Your goal is to always be considered and viewed as a qualified candidate. Strive to have your first impression in all environments that you enter promote you to the next level that you desire.
Phone interviews should not to be disregarded or taken lightly during the interview process. If your first phone interview is not viewed as successful by the interviewer; the face to face or Skype interview you are aiming for will most likely not be scheduled. Phone interviews can sometimes result in you being viewed as a qualified candidate for more than one employment opportunity pending the company’s hiring needs. Be yourself and be certain in your skills. Your confidence will be projected through the phone.
Below are a few phone interview do’s and don’ts for your review and consideration.
- Do declare to yourself that you are going to have a great phone interview with the potential employer.
- Don’t take your phone interview while driving. It’s ideal for you to complete the phone interview in a space where your call cannot be interrupted with back noise, music, or other audible distractions.
- Do smile during your phone interview. A smile can always be felt through the phone. If possible, keep a mirror in front of you as a reminder to smile.
- Don’t speak negatively or be disrespectful to the interviewer. During your phone interview they are the gatekeeper to you moving forward in the interview process.
- Do stand up during your phone interview. Standing up keeps you energized and assists in projecting your voice well during the call.
- Don’t be late for your phone interview. Be completely set up in your interview space and ready to take the call on time with the interviewer.
- Do have your resume in front of you and your preferred technical device near by that you may need to use to research something quickly during your interview.
At the end of your phone interview; journalize your outcomes, your follow-up action items, and your lessons learned if applicable.
Your ability to speak the language of your chosen industry is important not only when interviewing but also when conversing with various industry professionals. Taking the time to learn your industry language including acronyms and jargon beyond the textbooks is essential to your professional success. Being able to effectively communicate as an industry professional will prompt other professionals to view you as credible and increase your confidence in your professional skills and knowledge.
Below are a few language development tactics that will help you evolve the fluency of your industry language.
- Listen attentively during business initiative launches and reviews.
- Read and notice the verbiage details from business meeting minutes, industry related periodicals and books.
- Study industry websites and the description of their services and products.
- View industry advertising campaigns through various media forums.
Your industry language versatility will permit you to communicate well with various levels of professionals while leading you through the path of becoming a verifiable industry subject matter expert.