Success Insights

It’s December 12 and it’s indeed the most wonderful time of the year – no worries, I am not going to sing to you, but I do love the holiday season and as a Christian, the Christmas season is very special to me.

I know I’m not alone as celebration of Hanukkah and Kwanzaa (and probably a few more I don’t know) have already started…so cheers to whatever your celebration is this time of year.

As usual, I am getting ready for my trip to Georgia and looking forward to seeing my parents, siblings and niece.  I recognize this time of year is very difficult for many people, so I never take for granted what or who I have in my life, not only around the holidays, but all year round. In the spirit of the holiday season, I am going to do my share for spreading cheer and giving hope to the unemployed, underemployed or mis-employed.

Let’s get pumped up and excited about 2013 so here goes. On the first day of the holidays, my executive career coach said to me:

Conduct an honest self-assessment: Whenever I talk to clients who have reached a crossroads in their careers, I always hear “I don’t know what I want to do. Can you give me a test to figure it out?” Well….there are career assessment tools that help provide clarity about your values, interests, personality and skills, but alas no magic wand available.

However, you can take the first step and make a commitment to really uncover those things deep inside your heart. Take a look at your current job and evaluate your career progress in the past five years and ask yourself these questions:

  1. What do you value in work – achievements, recognition, status, autonomy or making a difference? Is is present in your current job?
  2. What skills are you good at and really enjoy using – writing, teaching, leading others, building, analyzing?
  3. Does your current job fully maximize your talents, strengths and favorite skills?
  4. Are you passionate about what you do and genuinely interested in your company’s products, services and clients?
  5. Does your paycheck make elated, happy or disgusted – bottom-line are your financial needs being adequately met?
  6. Are your job tasks and required responsibilities at a reasonable level or do you feel excess pressure and demands?
  7. Are you stuck in first gear or does your job give opportunities for growth and personal development?
  8. Are you moving forward, are you stuck, are you right on track?

Well, don’t sit there staring at the questions, nodding and shaking your head – go ahead, take notes and determine how you feel about your current career.

Career Success Day 2: Say Goodbye to Career Mistakes

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Abby Locke is an executive resume writer and career transformation coach who helps emerging leaders, executives and professional women to craft compelling career narratives and standout brand profiles.

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