Several years ago , if you had walked up to me and asked, what do you do and what would you like to do in few years, I would have had an easy set of answers. I would have said, well, I'm a manager of course. In a few years, I want to be a bigger manager!! Looking back, I was quite serious. My self-image and entire world was rolled up into a title. After much internal work and self reflection, several years later, I have a much different answer. Well, I'm a dad, husband, coach, author, speaker, teacher, community volunteer, doctoral student, aspiring philanthropist, (My wife laughs at this), and the list goes on. You see, this list is one that can't be taken away, unlike a job title. You can take away the job title though. How empowering it was to in fact think about what I do in terms of skills or activities. Aligning these skills or activities under one's most important values is indeed the nesting effect. I won't cover this process in this article but it is one that is equally powerful.
As companies grow bigger and sometimes more complex, I believe defining what one does in terms of their specific skill set will be of use both to the company as well as to the indificual. This applies to those who work for themselves as well.
I imagine (just my view) that the company of the future will peer into giant databases and look for employees with specific skills, not job titles. Projects and activities will start and stop and they will require employees with various skill sets. To strengthen employability, I have outlined a few practical ideas for looking at yourself as a person with a portfolio that includes your specific set of skills and services that you are able to provide. I think you will find that this method of thinking and defining might open up new paths of opportunity for you.
Who are you as a person? (I am a person that is ..... What are your values? (My key values are...... What are your beliefs? (I believe that ....... What are your capabilities? ( I am good at....... What are your behaviors? ( I generally act............. You might note, that as you change a belief about yourself, it affects your capabilities, your values and your purpose just to name a few. Take someone who believes that they are not good at speaking in public. This might affect their capability to speak and might effect their williness to volunteer (Behavior) . If this person acted in a way that made them feel confident about speaking, it might indeed effect their capabilities and their beliefs about speaking. One might also evaluate how their values and purpose are effected as well?
How would you explain what you do to someone without mentioning your job title? At least do this exercise as it is thought provoking.
Ah, the B word. Have you found that too much of anything can cause burnout? Once you have answered these questions for yourself, and are thinking of your life and services you offer as a portfolio, try the following: Take a given month, and allocate by percentage where you spend your time with what I call the ten slices of life.
* Now, draw yourself a chart showing by the current month where you spend your time. * Draw a new chart reflecting where you want your allocation to be in five years. Make this fun. Do this once every six months and evaluate. Has your purpose changed? How about your values? What about your beliefs, capabilities and behaviors? Have you added or deleted anything from your portfolio of services? How does your ten slices of life graph look?
Lastly, every six months, answer this question. If you had to describe your calling card without mentioning a job title, what would it say ? Too timely? This process can take about 2-3 hours every six months with perhaps a one day startup somewhere off on your own. The investment can last a lifetime. What would you like your license plate to say to state the purpose of your life? The next time someone asks you what you do, try telling them without giving a job title. You'll be surprised what you experience. Scary at first, sure.
You can!! Craig Nathanson The Vocational Coach T ''Guiding you to discover and live your vocational passion'' Workshops, Publications, Retreats and Private Coaching Phone 925-736-3952 Fax 925-736-5758 email@example.com http://www.thevocationalcoach.com Assess your vocational passion; Buy now at: http://www.thevocationalcoach.com/images/vpassionhow-how%20do%20you%20rae.htm
Last modified: March 2003
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