A Prescription for Career Resilience

For
most of the modern history of work, the employer-employee relationship was
based on an unwritten “Psychological Contract.” The unwritten rule was that if
you worked hard and put in your time, you would be rewarded with continuous
employment. It was not uncommon for individuals to work with the same company
for twenty or thirty years, with many people spending their entire careers with
the same organization.

In
recent decades corporate downsizing, restructuring, mergers and acquisitions,
outsourcing, etc. have resulted in a fundamental shift in terms of the
employer-employee relationship. Specifically, individuals working today can
expect that at some point, they will be faced with the reality of job change,
either inside or outside the company. For some, this change can be
exceptionally disruptive. It really doesn’t matter how big the change is, as
any career change can leave us feeling thrilled, nervous, sad, angry, hurt,
depleted, disoriented, confused, or even all the above.

There
is a mountain of evidence to suggest that continual change is, and continues to
be, the hallmark of the business environment today. Therefore, career
resilience is one of the essentials you will need to develop and nurture throughout
your work life.

Career
resilience refers to one’s ability to manage his or her career; that is, taking
responsibility for one’s own career development including gaining appropriate
knowledge and skills to make significant contributions to organizations.

Specifically,
career resilience means:

  • Ensuring that your employment skills do not
    become obsolete
  • Assessing whether your current skills will be
    required by your company or industry as you look ahead five to ten years
  • Understanding the job market and noting industry
    growth trends and high growth careers
  • Knowing how your talents, strengths and
    interests may translate into alternate jobs/careers should you find yourself
    unexpectedly unemployed
  • Knowing that a job loss does not have to mean a
    lengthy interruption of employment

Create your career
development plan and review it periodically.

No
one will be as invested in your career as you. Therefore, it is important to
take the initiative to design your own career development plan by considering
the following:

  • Continually assess your skills. Which of your current skills make you highly marketable?
  • Stay
    abreast of your local job market. What
    are the high growth jobs/industries/companies in your geographic region?
  • Continue
    to learn; view education as a continuing process, not a one-time event. What new skills would make you highly
    employable?
  • Continually find ways to add value to your employer. What initiatives/projects can you take on?
  • Continue to meet others in your industry. How can you be more visible in your field?

Rick Christensen

Rick Christensen: Director, Career Transition Practice
Rick has been a career consultant for over 25 years, serving a very broad-based and diverse clientele. His specialties include effective group facilitation, one-on-one coaching and consultation at all levels including senior executives.

Rick’s passion is coaching individuals through career transitions, developing career management strategies and in identifying and sharpening competencies to open doors to new opportunities. His efforts have assisted thousands of individuals achieve their full potential.

Contact Rick at: Rick@CareerDevelopmentPartners.com


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