Putting Your Dream To the Test

Moving from Corporate to Business

In my previous post, I asked if you might be living someone else’s dream. In this post, my question is, do you have a dream of your own? Perhaps it’s something that you’ve put to the back of your mind because you don’t think it is possible. Perhaps it’s a dream you’ve never followed because you’re not sure how to take the first step. Perhaps it’s a dream that you’ve never followed because you don’t want to risk quitting your job, or outlaying a lot of money to make it possible. Perhaps you’ve been discouraged to follow your dream, or have failed in your first attempt.

There is a way to examine your dream, and put it to the test, to see if it really is what you want to do. Putting it to the test in this way has no risk, and is not costly.

In his book, “Put Your Dream To The test”, John Maxwell suggests that if you know the right ten questions to ask yourself, and if you can answer them with a “yes”, you will have an excellent chance of being able to achieve your dreams. The more questions you can answer with a “yes” the greater your chances of success. I have already dealt with one of these questions (the question of ownership) in my previous post, and will cover some of the others in future blog posts.

I will be running a mastermind on this book at the end of August. Participants will have the chance to exchange thoughts and ideas, learn from each other’s experiences, and put their dreams to the test. I only wish I’d had the opportunity to read this book and participate in a mastermind like this when I was deciding what to do when I took my redundancy!

If you are interested in participating in this mastermind, or would like more information, please contact me. Places are limited, and will be filled on a first come, first serve basis, so please act now to avoid disappointment.

Facing Redundancy – Where To Go For Help

Moving from Corporate to Business

In my previous post, I started to tell you about what happened to me when I found out that I may be made redundant. In this post, I want to recommend to you the best sources of help and advice when facing redundancy, particularly if you want to keep your job.

Firstly, I would highly recommend that you join your union. they were an immense source of support and advice to me. Believe me, they won’t hold it against you if you join at this stage, and can be an excellent source of legal, financial, and other advice, including assisting you in interpreting the redundancy provisions of your workplace agreement.

Secondly, even if you’ve decided to take a package, it is essential to seek financial advice, preferably from a qualified financial adviser who is an expert in tax and superannuation. If your adviser is not an expert in superannuation, there are agencies who provide unbiased advice on superannuation, as they are not linked with any superannuation schemes. The agency that provided very good advice to me was StatePlus. Your employer may even pay for you to obtain this advice.

Thirdly, the Employee Assistance Program can also provide free counselling, which can help a great deal in coping with the emotional response to what is happening. This is confidential and free, and your employer doesn’t need to know where you are going, just that you have an EAP appointment. I had one of these sessions, and found it very beneficial.

Lastly, look closely at your workplace agreement, as there may be provisions referring to other assistance your employer will provide you with when facing redundancy, such as retraining, and career counselling. I was able to do a couple of online courses on technical writing, and starting a business, and also worked with a great career counsellor.

Finally, I recommend that you take up everything that is offered to you that you think may help you make a decision whether or not to take a package, or which will help you keep your current job or get another job in your chosen field. This is your chance, so make the most of it!

If I can help in any way, please let me know in the comments section or, if you prefer, contact me directly.

Editor’s Note: this blog post was updated on 15 July 2016 to add a reference and link to StatePlus.

Applying for Promotions and Not Getting Them?

Moving from Corporate to Business

When I first started working in the Public Service, I was in a legal job in which the classifications were broadbanded. This meant that the first 7 classifications were banded together into one. It also meant that I didn’t have to do anything to get a promotion. All I had to do was do my job well, and I would progress up through the pay classifications.

Later in my career, I held jobs that didn’t have broadbanded classifications, and I had to apply for every promotion I received.

Because I had spent so long in jobs with broadbanded classifications, I had real trouble gaining promotions, and only got them by changing jobs.

In this post, I want to share with you the traps I fell into. Think of them as my “promotion pitfalls”. If you avoid these, you will have a much greater chance of gaining that promotion that you seek.

Wrong Motivation
In almost every case, I applied for promotions because I wanted the money. I didn’t really think too hard about the extra duties and responsibilities, and so didn’t prepare myself accordingly.

Thankfully though, I also wanted to learn and grow, but this was not my primary focus most of the time.

Poor Self-belief
Whenever I walked into an interview for a job at a higher level, hoping I would get the job, I never got it. But the two most successful job interviews I had were those in which I walked in with the attitude that the job was mine, and if I didn’t convince the panel
accordingly, it was my fault! I really believed that I was the best person for the job.

Unwillingness to Step Up
In the final years of my career, I had become very disillusioned with my job. I thought that I would be happier if I was earning more, so I applied for many promotions.

However, I didn’t realise that, in order to demonstrate my capability to do my job at a higher level, I had to actually step up and work at that level while still being paid at my current level. When I did come to that realisation, I was unwilling to do this, as I felt that I shouldn’t have to do work for which I wasn’t being paid.

Lack of Intentional Relationship Building
While I didn’t have bad relationships with my colleagues, I didn’t go out of my way to build relationships with, or add value to, others who weren’t my friends. One of John C Maxwell’s most often used quotes is: “people don’t care how much you know until they
know how much you care”. Perhaps if I had applied this to my relationships with all my colleagues, they may have been more willing to share advice and information that would have helped advance my career.

Underselling Myself
Another reason why I had difficulty in gaining promotions was that I often undersold myself in job applications and interviews. As I mentioned before, this was probably due to my mistaken belief that I didn’t have to work above my current level prior to promotion, which meant that I had no concrete examples that I could actually do the
I shouldn’t have to do work for which I wasn’t being paid.

Lack of Personal Growth
Like many people, I concentrated on growing my capabilities to do my job, and paid little attention to growing myself as a person.

Through personal growth, it is possible to increase many skills such as self-belief, self-awareness, leadership skills, and influence. If I had paid more attention to developing these skills, I have no doubt that I would have been more successful in applying for, and gaining promotions.

 

So, if you are seeking a promotion:

  • Make sure you are applying for the promotion because you want to do the job, not just because you want the money;
  • Build your belief in yourself that you really are the best person for the job;
  • Before applying for the promotion, do everything you can to demonstrate your ability to do the job;
  • Intentionally, and authentically, build good relationships with your colleagues at all levels;
  • Prepare, prepare prepare, and sell sell sell – go into the application process with your eyes open, and don’t leave the panel guessing about your abilities; and
  • Take every opportunity you can to grow yourself

Good luck!

 

If I can help in any way, please let me know in the comments section or, if you prefer, contact me directly.