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career sherpa

Wonderful post! You've shown how important it is to use the lessons we've learned from today's job search to keep the competitive and pro-active posture necessary for MANAGING OUR CAREER!

Walter Akana

Thanks for your comment, Hannah! I think it’s all about career management, and I think that’s a lot like managing a business. So, it’s especially validating to hear high visibility and talented people like Pam Slim point that out! Her book is great – and has much to teach entrepreneurs and intrepreneurs alike!

Miriam Salpeter, Keppie Careers

Walter - Thanks for outlining the reality of the situation and providing some great suggestions to help people overcome it. I love the concept of thinking like an entrepreneur. Taking responsibility and a role in the process is so important!

Chandlee Bryan

Many years ago, I read a future trend that called for employees and jobseekers to think like "inde-preneurs" (to approach work from the entrepreneur's perspective, and to think "what can I learn from this" at each step along the way). Your post is a great reminder of that--it easier to climb the mountain when we've learned how!

All the Best,

Gayle Howard

Walter, great post. You're right; it's sure not our dad's job search! The key is not spending inordinate amounts of time in a dark room with a computer but engaging with people. It's all about communicating, networking, and thinking strategically. Listening is very important; those "coffees with old friends" aren't just "networking" sessions in a theoretical sense. They're opportunities to listen to what is being said. Hearing complaints about projects not working, poor leadership allows jobseekers to capitalize on what has been said. It's about being smart, adapting, listening and taking action. Job search needs to be listed as a full-time occupation due to the amount of time that needs to be devoted to it and the diversity of skills one needs to do it!

Laurie Berenson

Great post, Walter. I really like the analogy of managing your career to running a business. It's true in so many ways - including knowing how to define and differentiate your brand and value vs. that of your competition.

Walter Akana

@Miriam: Great comment! Taking responsibility and approaching one’s career as an entrepreneur running a business is more critical today than ever. The only job security today, is the security that you gain from knowing how to secure new opportunities.

@Chandlee: Interesting! I’ve never heard of "inde-preneurs" – but surely that writer was a visionary! There was a time, during the 1990s, when being an intrepreneur (inside a company) was the big idea. Central, I think is the ability to manage risk being productive. Today, learning the mountain trail is critical. Navigating risk is the new safety!

@Gayle: Wow, you sure extended the range of images: “spending inordinate amounts of time in a dark room with a computer” is like looking at the oncoming train! And beyond that, Gayle, you’ve really hit other keys: engaging with people and thinking strategically. In fact, I see these as woven together; only by listening and learning to we get the kind of knowledge and skills we need to enhance our productivity and value – and to take targeted action. I agree that job search is a full time occupation; after all, it’s about moving from project to project…just like a (serial) entrepreneur!

@Laurie: Yes, it’s interesting that the idea of your career as a business is so tied to defining and differentiating your brand and value vs. that of your competition. And while a growing trend for more than 10 years, it has never been more critical than it is today!

Thanks for your terrific comments, ladies! Enjoyed “chatting” with you :-)

Dawn Bugni

Walter -

Today's job search is certainly not your not "father's" job search. Daily, I educate job seekers, who haven't thought about their career in years, about the effort and network it takes to land a position. They're astounded 70+% of jobs are never advertised, but filled through referrals.

You network is truly your net worth in today's career environment.

Spot on post. Great info. Thanks!

Walter Akana

Hi Dawn! Thanks for your comment, and your kind words! I love your point: your network = your net worth! I think that solid connections with people in your community, coupled with the value you add, is a great way to build “social capital” – and that’s the currency of the “hidden” job market!

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Threshold Consulting

  • Walter Akana is a Career/Life Strategist who works exclusively with mid-career professionals who want to achieve more self-direction and satisfaction in their careers and lives. He is Reach certified as a Personal Branding and Online Identity strategist, and is a Reach Keynote Speaker




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