You and your fellow professionals have a lot in common.
You’re smart, you’re committed and you’re hard working.
Yet here’s the reality.
Many won’t achieve anything approaching their professional potential.
That’s hugely disappointing for anyone who has invested heavily in their qualifications and training.
But don’t despair. What I’ve noticed over the years is that if you focus on some key building blocks you increase your chances of being successful in your career.
Building Block 1: Define what success means to you personally
You are unique. What you want from your career is personal to you. You get to choose.
So take the time to define what success means personally to you.
Remember this isn’t set in stone. You can change course later.
Building Block 2: Determine what’s needed to achieve what you want
The greater the insight you have, the better decisions you can make.
Seek out people who have achieved what you want to achieve.
Speak to them about what’s needed to achieve what you want.
Building Block 3: Create a plan
This can be as formal or informal as you like.
As a minimum make sure you have goals and milestones.
Building Block 4: Implement your plan
This is the tough bit for many.
It’s easy in planning mode. There’s no risk.
When you start to implement your plan things won’t always go to plan. There will be setbacks. There will be disappointments.
Building Block 5: Take a long term view
Career success does not happen overnight. Think more in terms of a marathon than a sprint.
Whenever faced with a short term decision, consider how it fits with your longer term plan.
Building Block 6: Invest in yourself
Something that I’ve noticed only a small proportion actually do.
Think about the potential long term returns of investing in upskilling yourself.
They are significant.
Building Block 7: Keep your value high
Stay relevant. Avoid getting complacent and out of date.
See your continuing professional development as a priority.
In truth none of this is conceptually difficult. Equally the real test comes when you focus on implementation rather than information.