4 Lies You Need To Stop Telling Yourself

When it comes to moving forward in your career, it’s important to have a clear understanding of your current state to assess what your next step should be. Often professionals have a warped sense of reality that keeps them hostage in a career they despise. The truth is, if you want to be successful in your career, you’ve got to quit telling yourself these lies:⠀⠀⠀⠀

“I don’t know how to do anything else.”

THE TRUTH: You’ve likely developed lots of transferable skills throughout your previous experiences, and you just don’t know how capable you are because you have not taken inventory. 😨 The thing is, all jobs require certain core soft skills like communication, time management, adaptability, etc. Completing a skill gap analysis will allow you to analyze just how much you CAN do.⠀⠀⠀⠀

“My company needs me too much for me to leave.”

THE TRUTH: If you were to leave tomorrow, the company would find a replacement. It’s nothing personal – just business. Sure, when you play a key role on a team, and they value your contributions, it’s going to sting when it’s time to part ways. The question becomes, do you really want to live a life of regret just to avoid a moment of hard goodbyes?⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

“I have to do this because I went to college for this.”⠀

THE TRUTH: You can’t allow a decision you made in your late teens/early twenties to determine the rest of your life. Would you marry your toxic college boyfriend/girlfriend just because you chose to date him/her then? I pray your answer is ABSOLUTELY NOT! Keep that same energy with your career. So you majored in Political Science, but you want to work in tech, DO IT! I certainly did (more on my story to come in a later blog post) 😅⠀⠀⠀

“I don’t have any other options.”⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

THE TRUTH: You have as many options as you believe you have. Here’s the thing – the possibilities are endless, but it will take work. So the question becomes, how much work are you willing to do to get to where you want to be?

If you’ve been telling yourself one of these lies, today is the day to finally acknowledge the truth! Once you know the truth, it’s so much easier to start moving in the right direction.

Need assistance determining your next steps? Drop me a line, and let’s chat!

 

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Common Obstacles to Career Advancement & How They Present

While many people talk about the importance of career advancement, people rarely address the obstacles that arise along the way. Knowing (1) that these obstacles are real and (2) how they present are the first steps in preparing yourself for battle should any of them appear on your purpose path!

Fear “What if things don’t go according to plan?”

Raise your hand if you have ever avoided trying something new due to fear of how it would all turn out. Nobody can predict the future and have certainty of an outcome. However, that shouldn’t stop you from pursuing your passions because if no one ever tried, no one would ever succeed. This sense of anxiety over the unknown is natural, but you shouldn’t let it hinder you. Never let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game!

Self-Doubt “What if I fail?”

Self-doubt will cause you to quit before you even try. When that doubt starts to creep in, just remember two things: First, it’s okay to not hit every target on the first go-round. Use these opportunities to learn, grow and progress. Second, doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will. So just go for it!

Ignorance “I have no idea if my resume and LinkedIn are up to standard.”

There’s truly no excuse for this one in 2021 because there is an abundance of resources available at your fingertips. Whether it’s social media, e-learning, internet searches, or the hired help of an industry expert, use your resources to verify and improve your resume and Linkedin. This will not only optimize your portfolio, but it will give you the needed confidence to tackle your goals!

Complacency “I’m okay where I am.”

While it is totally okay to be happy with your current accomplishments, you should never limit your potential without good reason (ex: taking time to focus on self-care). Be the best that you can be (in all ways) and reap the rewards!

Weight of the Past “Because I didn’t do X, I’ll never be able to do Y.”

Leave the past exactly where it is… IN THE PAST! You should never let your past hold you back from a great future. As the old saying goes, “Sometimes it takes a small setback to breed a bigger comeback.” Use your lessons learned to strengthen you and move forward. Regardless of your past, you have the power to prosper!

These are just a few common obstacles. Have any of them been holding you back? If so, drop me a line, and let’s chat!

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4 Simple Habits of Productive Job Seekers

2020 was a year that really did a number on the economy and caused so many individuals and companies to suffer considerable financial losses. Thus, there are myriads of great professionals in search of new job opportunities. With the dramatic increase in available talent and the perceived decrease in available opportunities, it’s important to exercise efficient and effective job-seeking habits. Here are four of the best habits to implement in your daily quest for a new contract or position.

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Check For Opportunities Within Your Current Network

While you’ve probably become very familiar with every job board available, you want to also take advantage of your network by inquiring directly about any vacancies that suit your skillset. You should aim to spend at least 30 minutes a day sourcing and messaging people in your network about potential job openings. The best way to do this is via Linkedin so that they can easily view your profile and have an informed response about positions that would suit you. Feel free to add your direct contact information as well for them to pass along to their HR team. While this tactic may seem untraditional, you’d be surprised the results it can yield! According to CNBC, nearly 70 percent of jobs in 2018 were filled due to networking.

Keep Track of All Applications/Updates

Keeping track of all your applications and updates in a centralized location is an extremely important habit many job seekers miss! I’m sure many of us have been here before – receiving a call from a company about your application, but you can’t remember what the position was or what the key qualifications were – *slowly raises hand because I’m guilty too*. Note: It doesn’t have to be anything fancy. In fact, keeping it simple will likely increase your chances of sticking with it.. so do that!

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Tailor Resumes Per Position

Did you just roll your eyes out loud? I know, many people cringe at the thought of updating their resume for each position because, well, it takes time. However, this makes you stand out as a candidate more than a one-size-fits-all resume because it highlights education and experience most relevant to the position. For example, if you are a sales and marketing professional, your resume for a Marketing Specialist role would likely focus more on creative abilities, research and strategy planning, and tech-savviness versus your resume for an Account Executive role that would likely focus more so on communication skills, funnel development, and competitive goal-driven nature to constantly hit commission targets. Note: You many also find two marketing positions that highlight different preferred qualifications as well. In this case, you’ll want to make sure each resume includes the qualifications specified.

Check Email and Voicemail Often

This should go without saying but – return missed calls, listen to all voicemails and follow up on all emails! Make sure that your cellphone remains charged and you make yourself available to chat with any employers who want to speak with you in a timely manner. As the old saying goes, sometimes “you snooze, you lose.”

These, among others, are fundamental to being proactive and productive in your job search! Follow these steps and you will optimize your search and yield best results.

 

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Playing It “Safe” Is Cancelled

All too often, I encounter professionals who have settled in the realm of “safe.” This doesn’t come as a surprise since our whole life we are taught to put safety first – buckle up when you hit the road, wear a helmet while riding your bike, and don’t run with scissors, etc. It all makes perfect sense!

The issue is that we automatically make “safe” the solution when it comes to any risk. In the examples above, playing it safe makes sense because the perceived risks are completely devastating, and there is little to no perceived reward. But what about the cases where the perceived risk is small while the perceived reward is huge? In these instances, playing it safe becomes the dangerous option!

We often hear warnings about taking big risks, but we rarely hear warnings about playing it safe. Because the effects aren’t typically super immediate or obvious, people don’t often connect the dots. Instead, before they know it, they end up with a life of regret and “what ifs.”

And this, my friend, is why I became a career advancement strategist!

My goal is to help professionals change their career narrative. There are too many people settling for far less than they deserve because they fear failure or fear the unknown.

If you find yourself playing it safe, here are some tips to level up: 

  1. Begin with the end in mind. Don’t just take risks for the sake of taking risks. Set goals, identify the associated risks and rewards, then evaluate the potential outcomes.
  2. Start with small risks. The more comfortable you get with risk-taking, the less fear will cripple you.
  3. Understand that failure is not final. The truth is, at some point, we’ll all fail – just research your favorite icon! It’s all about how you learn from your experience that will determine your fate.

And always remember: it’s never “too late” to make a bold career decision! If you’re not sure where to start, drop me a line and let’s chat!

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Crafting an Irresistible Career Summary

Raise your hand if you like to decide whether you want to see a movie based on the trailer.

That’s because the trailer typically gives you a good idea of what the movie is about, using some of the most interesting parts to capture your attention. Your career summary should do the same!

Your career summary acts as a teaser for the rest of your resume; you need to give the recruiter/hiring manager a reason to want to read more. Not sure what that looks like? Well, you’re in luck because I’m telling you exactly how!

  1. Save it for last. Although it appears at the top of your resume, you should make it the last piece you update – this way, you’ve already filtered through your most relevant accomplishments. From there, it’s easy to decide your most significant selling points!
  2. Keep it brief. After all, making it super long sort of defeats the point of having a career summary. Think about it – a 35-minute trailer just isn’t as appealing as a 2-minute trailer.
  3. Structure it well. Lead with your professional identity; be sure to include your number of years of experience. Follow that with highlights from your general experience. Close it out with your top achievement.
  4. Use quantifiable data to complement your skills where possible. Remember, numbers are much more persuasive than words. “Great saleswoman” is subjective, but “Increased department sales by 75% in one year” is MAGIC!
  5. Ensure it uses the keywords from your desired job description. This is where excellence and secret sauce intersect! You know what buzzwords applicant tracking systems, recruiters, and hiring managers are scanning your resume for? The words listed in the job description!

Here’s my real-life example:

Dynamic Program Manager with 10+ years of experience leading small to large-scale projects in healthcare technology, financial services, and business research. Proven track record in risk mitigation, building cross-functional teams, and coaching individuals to success. Experienced in managing $1M+ budgets and 20+ member teams.

Struggling to capture your awesome-ness via a career summary? Drop me a line & let’s chat!

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