A Career Transition Essential – Staying Relevant

Navigating a career is never easy. There will be obstacles and disappointments. There will be joys and celebrations. At times, even new opportunities come to you from “out of the blue.” It is when those obstacles, disappointment, and “out of the blue” situations happen is when the true grit of a leader comes to the surface. However, “true grit” doesn’t just show up; it takes anticipation and preparation. The key to being prepared for a quick and unexpected career transition is to stay career relevant.

What is involved in staying career relevant?

  1. Not only knowing what you are good at but also to understand where you need to improve or develop. Too often, we see the excellent work we do; we don’t spend enough time reflecting on where we need to improve.
  2. Preparation comes from being brutally honest. Don’t just rely on your relevancy inventory. You should also look to trusted workmates, bosses, and mentors to complete this relevancy inventory. When you ask these people for input, tell them you are not afraid and would prefer it if this information be prickly; that you honestly want to improve and are looking for them to help you. Take notes and do not get defensive.
  3. After these interviews, review your notes and make a list of those areas of improvement or growth. Add to this your relevancy inventory. This list is your relevancy-gap analysis.
  4. From this relevancy-gap analysis, develop a plan for each item to improve, learn, or stretch your skill set. Include the development resource, a timeline, and set completion milestone for each gap.

Being a life-long learner is the essential criteria for maintaining career relevancy. If you find yourself becoming satisfied, complacent, or on cruise control, it is time for a relevancy inventory. A key to lifetime career relevancy and more importantly, career satisfaction is to learn, grow, and stretch every day.

About rich@leading2leadership.com

Rich Jones is the Founder/Principal of Leading2Leadership LLC. Before starting his strategic planning agency, he spent over 20 years in leadership roles in the financial services sector. Before becoming an executive in the financial services sector, Rich was an entrepreneur, building and selling two businesses and working for early-stage start-up companies in executive roles in marketing, business development, and seeking investment partners. With more than three decades of experience, he brings innovative thought to companies and executives. Rich published “Leading2Leadership, a Situational Primer to Leadership Excellence.” The book is available on Amazon.com and was designed to be used as a book study for leadership development programs; it breaks leadership skills into manageable situations for discussion and reflection. Rich works with credit unions, CUSOs, and vendors, designing digital, data, culture, marketing, and branding transformation strategies. In 2014, Chosen as a Credit Union Rock Star by CU Magazine, and in 2018, Rich received the Lifetime Achievement Award from CUNA Marketing and Business Development Council. A Marine and graduate of Colorado State University, Jones shares his expertise at www.leading2leadership.com.

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