Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter discusses an attitude that you need to employ in order to be successful in your career.
I wanted to speak with you today about the most successful career strategy that you can employ.
Most job hunters, most professionals, most employees of companies joining like sheepdogs. You come to work at companies, you have that happy glow and feel good about the opportunity. You are dedicated and committed to the organization. You give it your all!
Here is one problem. I'm going to use an analogy from dating. What you have done is fall in love too soon. As a matter of fact you have fallen in love which isn't the best strategy to take with an employer because they are dispassionate. As much as your manager may tell you that you are fabulous and wonderful, it is a placebo that corporations get out that cost them nothing and causes you to feel good about yourself.
The reality is that when times get tough, you are gone or at risk of being gone, no matter how great a job you have done. This is true whether you're at the staff level or at a leadership level. The risk that you experience is enormous.
You have to look at your career as a consultant would. After all, it's not like you going to be able to go to work there when you're 20 and stay there until retirement age, right? You know that already! The days of the gold watch are gone.
It doesn't matter whether you are on private sector or government. With the new president, government workers feel at risk because he is spoken frequently about spending for government employees. Whether they are fighting back or not, they feel threatened. Thus, they feel at risk for whether their job is safe.
Private sector workers have gone through cycles of that. Certainly, in 2008 and before that in 2001, private sector workers got obliterated before they eventually came back and started working again.
If you are thinking of a career strategy, the issue comes down to what you give your power away to someone who doesn't really care and who only looks out for their interest of times get a little bit difficult? No! It makes no sense to do that! It's like being in a relationship, going out on one date and saying, "I love you.!" The other person then say it's with some amount of exasperation, "Okay. Okay. Umm. I have strong feelings for you, to." They are not as committed or is engaged as you are. An employer wants to see that level of commitment as part of the hiring process and you have to presented in a way that is believable.
Interviewing is theater. This is part of the theater, you have to use; you can't fall prey to their desire to get you emotionally engaged when they are only going to come back and hurt you later on.
Instead, think as a consultant would. I have a job to do. I'm going to do a great job. I'm going to get paid fairly for it. At the end of that work. If you have more than I'm going to find interesting and will pay me well for, fabulous! I love that! If you want to give me a promotion, TERRIFIC! I will make more money – – SUPER! I need to see work that makes sense for me and my objectives.
It's like I've said in another video, is like being the chairman of the board of your own Corporation. Your family, your wife, husband, partner, kids – – they are the shareholders, but you are in charge. In taking that kind of approach, you have a degree of detachment and objectivity about the treatment that you received from your manager and coworkers and from your employer.
You look at the work that you're doing with objective eyes. After all, they may say, "We have this very important project and you're going to be on it for the next 2 years. It's really important to us. We know it's not real interesting and your mind will turn to mush, but we need you to do it."
At the end of 2 years, you are at risk of being thrown out because they don't need you anymore. Often, these kind of special projects are particularly marketable to anyone other than your current employer. Your career has been destroyed all because you said yes to something you shouldn't have said yes to.
Again, my advice is to act like a consultant and be the chairman of your business. Look at things with critical eyes and decide whether it makes sense for you and your career. Don't give away your heart. Don't give away your power. Don't give away your ability to say, "No" and take on things that make no sense and put your career at risk.
Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter is a coach who worked as a recruiter for what seems like one hundred years. His work involves life coaching, as well as executive job search coaching and leadership coaching.
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