Oh, I see. Your roadmap is someone else’s responsibility. You can’t create a roadmap due to circumstances beyond your control. Your roadmap is doomed due to your past.
So those are your excuses. Really?
Let’s sit down and have a chat.
Back to my original question. Why are you ignoring your professional development roadmap? Why haven’t you even created one?
My professional scorecard is ugly. OK, I hear you. There are parts of your resume you want to bury in some black hole. There are choices you made that are painful to recall. You let your past “stuff” hold you back. You replay your past “stuff” inside your head as payback for poor choices made at a point in your career when you weren’t as experienced and wise are you are now. Jettison that garbage. Enough self-punishment.
I think I am not smart enough. Somewhere along the line, some high school teacher told you that you aren’t college material. And you bought into their crap. Why are you so invaluable at your place of work? You are pretty darn good at what you do. Time to earn that Associates Degree, my friend. The past is past. You know who you are now.
I won’t admit I lack certain competencies. You head up a small business that isn’t going anywhere very quickly. You are spinning your revenue wheels: you are where you were five years ago. You have overhead and salaries and bills to pay. You avoid identifying the root cause of your company’s problem. Yes, it is you. You just don’t want to let on to your employees that you don’t exactly know what you are doing. So you purposefully hire employees who are not as smart or fortunate as you are. Everyone is suffering. Liberate them. Liberate yourself.
My employer won’t pay for my professional development. You left your professional development in the hands of your employer. They are less than willing to invest in their employees’ professional roadmaps. You re-assigned control of your career trajectory to folks who are higher up in the company’s food chain. Someone’s job title doesn’t necessarily equate with their being more capable of managing your career. They only may be looking out for themselves.
I want to do more. You are locked and loaded into a solid career path with a company you’ve worked with for years. You have kids and a mortgage. You are on target for another promotion. Yet you have this nagging feeling that there is something else out there which you just can’t seem to put your finger on. You are meant to do more. “More” may not have anything to do with your job – or maybe it does. You are pretty good at figuring things out. This time, however, you are stuck.
Come on. Stop putting this off. Get some paper and a pencil. Take a chance. Put your thoughts down on paper. Create a preliminary professional development roadmap.
You know something? The physical act of creating your roadmap by writing down the steps reinforces your decision. You are physically all-in to creating what’s next for your career. You are emotionally all-in, because you overcame those mental hurdles when you made your decision to pick up the paper and pencil. You are innovatively all-in, because the more you write down, the more you edit, create and re-create.
You will encounter stumbling blocks. You know where to find me. The most important decision you’ve made is to reclaim your ownership of your professional development. Don’t you feel wonderful?
Babette N. Ten Haken is a strategist, analyst, author and blogger. Her focus: the interrelationship between teams, leadership and culture in technology and manufacturing. Her Workshops and Professional Tuneup Coaching Programs target excellence in the execution of strategy. Her Playbook of collaboration hacks, Do YOU Mean Business? is available on Amazon.com.
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