Making A Career Shift - When 'What Should I Do?' Isn’t Working

“What's my ideal career?” “What kind of work suits me best and would make me happy?” “What kind of a change, and how big, do I want to make?” “Once I know what I want to do, then I can start - I just can't figure out what that is.”

What? What? What?… Suppose trying to pin down your 'What' first doesn't work?  Where do you begin? The greatest moments of inspiration often come when you approach a problem from a new angle.  Instead of starting your career shift from ‘What?’ why not try starting from 'Who?'

The 'Who' of your career is a two-part question: who do you want to work with? - your team, your manager, your company - and who do you want to serve, or work for? - your clients and customers. These might seem like very different groups, but it all boils down to who do you want to be with all day?

Because you will be with them all day...  According to a recent report on corporate workplace environment, employees were about as likely to have daily contact with colleagues (62%) as they were their own children (64%), and over 4 in 10 (44%) were more likely to have daily contact with their bosses than with their mothers (26%) or friends (16%).  

Under the circumstances, it isn’t surprising that the quality of your working relationships can influence your feelings about work as much as what you're actually doing.  Gallup found that close work friendships increase job satisfaction by 50%, and people with a best friend at work are seven times more likely to engage fully in their work.

So if you can't figure out your 'What' yet, your 'Who' might be a smart place to begin.  Some questions to ask yourself are:

·      Who inspires you? Who do you admire?

·      What values do you want in the people you spend your working hours with?

·      Are they creative thinkers? No-nonsense go-getters? 

·      Who would you be proud to serve?

·      What kind of people need, value and celebrate your personal qualities?

·      What type of people balance and support you, make you feel most like yourself?

·      Do you even want to be around people at work, or would you rather be a solopreneur?

Once you've got an idea about 'Who', you can begin to think about 'Where' those people might be found. And you might just find that the 'What' follows closely behind...

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