Blog Post

Creating a Career Campaign: The Passive Aspirer

Creating a Career Campaign

I hope you have begun the new year with optimism and energy in guiding your own career to achieve your aspirations.

The new year is a time for resolutions. From a career perspective, we can find ourselves feeling like we have a label like “The Passive Aspirer” or “The Focused Seeker.” More on that later…

One of the ways a resolution becomes a reality is to know the difference between a dream and a goal.  A dream can be all aspiration without action, but a goal implies that a plan for action has been created to guide your way to the career opportunities you desire. This is where a career campaign can take shape. The fact remains, though, that we are not all at the same point on our path or in our development.

Knowing this, I will share a series of three posts for three different groups. Which of these describes you?

  1. The Passive Aspirer – I’m NOT in an active job search but have career aspirations.
  2. The Focused Seeker – I know the job I want, but I need help creating a campaign to seek it.
  3. The Settled and Wondering – I’ve got the job, what now?

These tend to be linear, but don’t discount the other groups if you have “advanced to the next step”. There’s learning in all of these.

Three Strategies if you are NOT in an Active Job Search

Even though this person is reasonably fulfilled and happy in their current role, she can gain an impeccable reputation by exercising positive character-building activities like connecting, growing, and sharing. It’s wise to be prepared, so she can always take the approach of building her network, building her skills and experience, and being a “giver”. These are just wise practices, even for the non-active job seeker.

Build strategic relationships now for the future

Identify experts and key thought leaders in your field whom you admire and reach out to nurture a mentoring relationship over time. Be specific about your request to gain expertise, resources, and guidance. For example, scheduling a breakfast every other month for a year is a good place to start as you make a plan.  Most people are flattered to be asked to mentor and really enjoy getting out to breakfast and having you treat!

Create your career portfolio and identify gaps in experience and accomplishments

Picture yourself in the interview you most desire. Now examine the highlights in your portfolio and define what additional leadership experience, high-level projects, expertise, and unique interests you could pursue to add to your marketability.  At work, in industry associations, and in your community seek to create the opportunities to gain the knowledge, skills, and experience that will differentiate you as a candidate.

Ensure you are a reciprocal partner

When you are seeking the help and advice of others, either formally as a mentor or informally in hallway conversations or at social events, make sure you are adding value by sending research, articles, and blogs this person may find of interest to show your appreciation.

You’ve Invested in YOU, now stay tuned!

If you are not sure what will help you to be the best candidate for the next level, go back to the first step and seek that specific advice from key mentors. Do this until you fully understand what it will take to succeed at the next level and show you are ready for the career advancement you are seeking. Stay tuned for that time and place when you can let your efforts shine through.

Seize the day and know that, in time, you will be so glad you spent this time investing in you!

Next in the series: The Focused Seeker – I know the job I want, but I need help a creating a campaign to seek it.

Resources for Your (or someone else’s) Career Campaign…

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