If everything goes smoothly in your career and you don’t run into any major concerns along the way…stop reading, because this post doesn’t apply to you! Pat yourself on the back and keep on doing what you’re doing. It must be working!
On the other hand….
Most of us can handle small glitches in our career path, and some of you might be able to zoom through bigger challenges with relative ease. However, it’s perfectly normal to feel intimidated or overwhelmed at times, especially when the challenge looms large on your horizon.
Here’s a classic example: You might begin to realize that your chosen career field—which you’ve spent several years building experience and achieving promotions in—is facing a downward trend. You start feeling afraid that you’ll be sidelined and eventually find yourself stuck in a going-nowhere position. Worse, you’re afraid you might be on a slippery slide to total career oblivion.
Experts (like me!) will tell you to get creative and look for career options that can build on what you’ve learned and achieved, taking you on a somewhat different career path but helping you stay relevant and marketable.
“But that’s difficult!” you might say. “In fact, it’s impossible. I don’t see a way to do it at all.”
Some of you might be familiar with the saying below:
“The difficult we do immediately. The impossible takes a little longer.”—Motto of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers during World War II. (Note: Several other versions of this quote have been around for centuries.)
Tackling the “impossible” often takes courage and determination. That’s right: no one said it would always be easy. If you’re pragmatic and clear-headed about the career challenge you face, you already know the answers (career management solutions) won’t come quickly. That doesn’t mean they won’t come if you persist in looking for them and keep an open mind.
What’s the worst that can happen? Well, you might decide to sit tight and “ride it out,” hoping you don’t have to make a tough career decision. Waiting for a miracle, in other words. By not taking action to change the impossible into the possible, you’ve left yourself wide open to the potential for failure.
Instead, look for possible resources to help you make wise career decisions. Those resources can be people, publications, professional associations, and more. Don’t ignore the internet, of course—it’s a potentially good source of information, if you check out what you find there before you act on it. Just don’t expect the internet to be a magic wand that solves all your career management or job search challenges effortlessly.
P.S. This is not a new topic. I’ve talked about it before. The wisest, most effective way to manage your career is to stay on top of what’s happening, keep an eye on developments that might become field or industry trends, and take advantage of every reasonable opportunity to increase and broaden your professional value. Actually, that doesn’t even really take courage; it just takes career-savvy smartness and the willingness to ACT, rather than letting fear keep you from tackling the career challenge successfully.