gregarious

The Only Way To Build A Career That Generates Both Financial And Emotional Reward September 17 2014

by Kathy Caprino, Guest Blogger -

Throughout my 18-year corporate career, all I saw around me was what other corporate people were doing – the good, bad and the ugly. The meetings that droned on and on, the ridiculous political fights, the narcissist leader, the power-hungry manager stepping all over his staff, the passing over of certain individuals for promotions because they didn’t “fit in,” and so on. I also saw examples of individuals thriving in their work, and leaders who inspired, but truthfully, those were very few and far between.

Now that I’m out of corporate life and run my own business, I see it all very differently. I see what I and others should have been doing to build our careers more successfully — to experience greater personal reward and satisfaction – even in very limiting corporate situations. And I see that many people are far better suited to being out on their own as independent workers – either as entrepreneurs, consultants, private practitioners or in other capacities.

Helping people move from career misery to professional joy and reward, I’ve identified 7 essential steps professionals must take if they want to generate exciting financial reward and experience doing meaningful, purposeful work that aligns with their highest values and authentic lifelong goals.

The 7 critical steps to building a career that’s both financially and emotionally rewarding are:

Know that you are more than your current role

Every year in my career coaching I learn one major lesson about career pain that I hadn’t seen in that way before. This year’s lesson is that people can’t help but feel absolutely defined by how they’re doing in their current job – by what their bosses and colleagues think of them, and how they are performing within that tight, narrow culture.  It doesn’t matter if they were stellar rock stars in their previous jobs; if they’re suffering now and not being appreciated, recognized and valued, that’s all they see and all they believe.

The reality, however, is much different. You aren’t just this job or role – you are an amazing amalgam of talents, gifts, experiences, perspectives, accomplishments and contributions. Just because this job isn’t a fit and you’re failing at it, doesn’t mean you are a failure. It means you’re focused on the wrong thing, with the wrong people, at the wrong place.

Tip: Know when it’s time to leave. Don’t stay in a place that doesn’t accept or value you.

Figure out who you love to serve

I felt so often in my corporate work, “What am I doing this for? Who cares? What’s the point?” Selling and marketing products for marketing organizations left me very cold. Now I know why. I thrive on doing work that contributes to people’s growth and happiness. If I’m not doing that, I’m not satisfied. I also know that I love to serve mid-career women in particular, because I was so lost in my former professional life and I couldn’t find any help that truly addressed my specific challenges.  And those challenges, in great part, had to do with my being female in a corporate world that didn’t embrace feminine leadership styles, values and approaches.

Knowing exactly what you want to do and who you love to serve, and pursuing that in your work, takes courage and resilience. I can’t tell you how many men each year challenge me in my chosen niche of serving professional women.  Men have asked angrily, “Why don’t you offer your programs to men too?” What they really mean is, “I need the kind of help you’re offering. Why can’t I have it?” The answer is that there is a very great need today for supporting the advancement of women in leadership and business in ways that honor and address women specifically, and I’m happiest and most fulfilled when I am contributing to that goal. You have to be tough, courageous and firm about who you are, and what you love to do, and not cave under challenge and criticism. That’s what it takes to pursue your heart’s work.

Tip: Start identifying exactly who you love to serve, and have the guts to pursue that niche. (This tool will help.)

Use your natural talents

It was a shocker to me that we can be fabulous at tasks we hate to do. Your work is much more fun and rewarding when you’re using talents that come naturally versus skills that you’ve acquired because you had to, but aren’t easy for you. For example, I’ve been good at managing multi-million dollar marketing budgets, and reporting on P&L variances to a corporate board, but I hate it. I much prefer (and am much better at) formulating ideas and new behavioral models to generate change, as well as writing, training, coaching, speaking, product development, qualitative research, and more.

Tip: Base your career on what comes naturally and easily to you. I guarantee that drawing on your natural talents generates much more reward on many levels. Use what you’re gifted at, not what you struggle to achieve.

Build connections with people you adore, and help them

Yesterday, I felt so exuberant and blessed because I dedicated a full day to talking to new colleagues, mentoring new contacts (who became instant friends), and connecting with professionals I love.  An amazing boost of adrenalin comes from collaborating with and helping people you adore.  And the more you do this, the larger your circle grows with people you deeply admire, and who inspire you.

Don’t spend one minute more than you have to with people you don’t like.  Wasting your time with them means you’ll lose precious opportunities to build a more robust support community of people who enliven and inspire you to grow and thrive.

Tip: Identify at least one new person each week you admire and adore, and would like to help. Get on the phone with them, and find new ways to be of help.

Close your power gaps

I was laid off after 9/11, and my self-esteem was shot for months (and years) after.  I didn’t realize then that being let go was exactly what needed to happen, because I hated my corporate identity and needed a change but would not take the steps to alter it. Now I see that I suffered from what I call a “power gap” – being laid off made me feel unworthy, unwanted and weak.

The single most important thing you can do to build a professional life you love is look at where you feel “less than” and address that courageously. Whether you haven’t finished your degree and you’re ashamed of that, or your skills in a critical area are rusty, or you got fired six months ago and it’s devastated you, spend the day today thinking about your “dirty little secret” – what makes you feel undesirable, unworthy and ashamed. Then do something bold and courageous to address that power gap so you’ll never have to live that feeling of “I’m ashamed because I’m not good enough” again.  My bold move was to earn a Master’s degree in marriage and family therapy and change careers. What a blessing that was.

Tip: Look at where you feel ashamed and unworthy, and take a bold step to close that power gap today. Do it!

Think bigger than “What’s My Next Job?”

Sadly, thousands of corporate professionals think only in terms of linear career progression, and that’s the wrong way to look at your career. It’s not a series of jobs, salaries, and titles you should be focused on. It’s who you want to be in the working world, and how you want to contribute over the long arch of your life.

For example, if you’re an advertising director who longs to do something much more creative with your talents, don’t think only about what next advertising job will get you there (because it won’t). Think about how you can leverage your creative talents to do something completely different, such as produce and sell your own art, or illustrate a children’s book. If you’re a copywriter bored out of your mind at your science marketing job, think about how you can use your writing talents differently – perhaps to help a worthy cause, or support a non-profit you care about, or write your own blog (or book).  Get out of the narrow thinking about your next job, and explore how else you can contribute in the world.

Tip – Brainstorm openly about other ways you can use your talents and gifts rather than “What next job should I get?” Evaluate the talents you love to use, and talk to everyone you know about new and different avenues for being of service using these talents.

Act like a savvy entrepreneur

I remember one of my bosses saying to me when I was reviewing my division’s P&L, “I want you to manage this as if it were you’re money.” I tried, but couldn’t wrap my head around that, because it wasn’t my money. Now that I run my own business, I get it. Every single investment – every new technology tool, new partnership, new  program I launch – means I’m committing to a new direction and I have to know what it takes to make it work, and be fully prepared to make that happen.

Corporate folks often don’t know what that feels like.  But if you can “try on” and live the identity of an entrepreneur, your career will change for the better. You’ll embrace risk more easily, and you’ll understand your potential contributions and talents and leverage those.  You’ll embrace failure as information, and you’ll realize more quickly when things are going sour, and learn to pivot. And finally, you’ll understand that the people you surround yourself with can make or break your happiness, success and growth.

Don’t stay stuck where you are. Be flexible, nimble, fluid and open.

Tip: Wherever you are today, think more like an entrepreneur. Change is good, flexibility is critical, self-trust is essential. Don’t resist it.

(To build a happier, more rewarding career, visit the Amazing Career Project.)

Kathy Caprino, M.A. is a nationally-recognized career success coach, writer, trainer and speaker dedicated to the advancement of women in business. She is the author of Breakdown, Breakthrough:The Professional Woman’s Guide to Claiming a Life of Passion, Power and Purpose, and Founder/President of Ellia Communications, Inc. and The Amazing Career Project, all focusing on helping professional women build successful, rewarding careers of significance. A Forbes and Huffington Post contributor and top media source on women’s career and entrepreneurial issues, she has appeared in over 100 leading newspapers and magazines and on national radio and television. For more information, visit www.kathycaprino.com and connect with Kathy on: Twitter, FB, LinkedIn.

Source: http://www.forbes.com/sites/kathycaprino/2014/05/03/the-only-way-to-build-a-career-that-generates-both-financial-and-emotional-reward/


Gigalot: In The Spirit Of Reciprocity August 11 2014

by Shirley Kine -

Thirty years ago, I had prepared my first financial statements for a hobby business. More as a necessary evil, records were needed to reflect the viability of that venture. I far more enjoyed the hustle and bustle of the business, and the benefits the people enjoyed from working for themselves. By also generating the financial statements for this and other businesses they created over the next thirty years, I was also able to watch their wealth and businesses grow into a formidable force.

This was not my only business I saw grow. One by one, more hobbyists came forward. Enough so that I was able to create a living by developing micro-enterprise.

Oh, the many things I learned. Even social problems could be addressed through a business model.

In gratitude for my path, the learning, the livelihood and in the spirit of giving back, our online micro-entrepreneur portal will serve as a place to market test, collaborate, learn, support each other and "shop" amongst themselves, the micro-entrepreneur. Micro-entrepreneurs will gain much needed information from this experience as to what level they can take their business, and they can self-fund their venture along the way!

Reciprocity is actually one of the Universal Laws

It involves two parties (at minimum) of which the reciprocation cannot exist without the other. Take a pair of shoes - the function is clear. Lose a shoe - and the function is gone and at best, there is imbalance. By give and take, left or right, a vital cycle of energy is created. By giving, receiving ensues and a cycle of life balance is restored.

We are pleased to create a service that supports joy, creation and independence — a resource tool giving back to the benefits we have received by working with the active micro-entrepreneur.

Join us in the reciprocity cycle and go back to the day of the butcher, the baker, the candlestick maker. Will gratitude be expressed by a multi-national corporation or by the little guy/gal trying to send their kids to camp? Shop here amongst our micro-entrepreneurs (in various stages of development) and find out.

Here's to Reciprocity. May all the micro-entrepreneurs who gather here blossom to their full potential!

Shirley Kine has her Masters Degree in Social Work, Leadership from the University of Calgary 2008 with undergraduate degrees from U of C in Social Work, Northern, Remote and Aboriginal Specialty and Athabasca University, BGS 1994. She is a graduate of Lakeland College, Business Administration 1980. She is currently working on her MBA (Community Economic Development) from CBU with a focus on International Business.

She began "minding everyone's business" in Lloydminster, AB where she had 8 clients and stepped in where necessary while sole proprietors were away. A pull towards dealing with societal issues began very evident in the 90's as she relocated to start taking social work classes. It became very apparent how both skill sets would factor in to her becoming an Economic Development officer for a First Nation.

Her advice to any business owner is start small. See if you like it. See if you have what it takes. She most fully believes in having one foot in the employment world while growing the entrepreneur venture. She has seen many businesses start in the basement as home based industries to becoming corporate entities. She loves social enterprise where non profits also have a foot in the entrepreneurial world. specialty in Complexity Science will always lead clients to Win Win situations. Why not do both??? No one said "Either - or"?