It was 8 years ago in July 2008, where I found myself reflective, hopeful, pondering from a bird's eye view my Career vantage point while overlooking Lake Tahoe in a year where I had steered my career back to the staffing landscape. It was a welcome reprieve from what up until that point had been a busy year. Lake Tahoe, a beloved place I love to visit and will have opportunity again to visit this summer at our family reunion. I am very much looking forward to finding myself there again to renew, and relax. You can read my blog post on the perspective I gained there when I found myself working in HR Consulting & Staffing at HR Solutions Partners. Indeed, one of my first blogs on RecruitingBlogs, where to this day I still like to write to find new perspective in the Career I love - Recruiting/Staffing & Talent Acquisition. See here: http://www.recruitingblogs.com/profiles/blogs/502551:BlogPost:214078
Now this picture above was taken approximately 2 years ago on our last trip when my daughter and I set out on a morning jaunt to take some pictures of Emerald Bay at sunrise. It is now the picture that also graces my LinkedIn Profile:
There is a reason for that. Perspective. I am reminded whenever I log in to LinkedIn when on a Recruiting Quest/Networking Quest the perspective I had on my career, my life, and my purpose as a staffing/HR Professional. In so many ways I am blessed. In so many ways I can mark that year of 2008 as the turning point in my Professional Life. I had come so far up to that point. A few internships, a few HR Posts, and a couple of staffing related roles. I had made a choice to go into internal HR as a Generalist, and then found myself feeling hungry for a Staffing/Recruitment/Talent Acquisition role again. That led me to Solutions Partners that year, where I found a renewed enjoyment for sourcing/talent acquisition prowess. The economy then hit. In 2009, I had my hours cut to part time, in a small boutique HR consultancy practice, that relied on Direct Hire fees to bring home the bread. Having had a taste of bringing in some of these major fees, and the work that went in as a contingency staffing firm, I greatly found the perspective that this was something I enjoyed, finding fit, building rapport, and making matches that lasted. Since that time I have been engaged in nearly 900 hires. A remarkable number, which gives me pause to wonder in awe, WOW. The accomplishments that led there were part of a "village" effort at times, from start-ups, to multiple tech clients, to my current corporate post, one ponders the lives changed, the remarkable outcomes achieved, and amazing results. After Solutions Partners, I found myself at NetPolarity which gave me some new skills, and a further taste of technology staffing. NetPolarity opened a new funnel and hunger over a 2 and half year period giving me greater industry understanding across multiple tech, and non-tech industries. In 2012 ADP came knocking and I landed in what I still consider one of the best moves that I have personally and professionally made. It allowed me to move to Utah where the housing market was more affordable, created greater work/life balance, and enabled me to drive staffing in a corporate internal environment, the next iteration of my career.
A few years ago - I had the privilege to interview Orville Pierson - Author of the Book - The UnWritten Rules of the Highly Effective Job Search, and the former VP of Program Design at Lee Hecht Harrison for a piece I ran on RecruitingBlogs.com. His book was something that helped me early on as I was finding my way and seeking to establish myself. Every now and then I will dust it off, and read again to remind myself what Job Seekers are going through, and not only job seekers but established professionals. All of us it seems are hungry for the Perspective that your career vantage point, your career quiet time brings you. When in that element it is vital, no, it is essential to have the vision in your mind's eye of your beginning current point, your short term desired goals, and the long term vision of where you see yourself down the line. Goals are paramount. Read the Orville Pierson interview, and see what perspective I gained from this wonderful Careers Guru: http://www.recruitingblogs.com/profiles/blogs/what-recruiters-can-l...
I had a wonderful conversation with Orville that day. He gave me some perspective about the job seeking process, what it takes to own your career, and what it takes to build success into one's trajectory be it on whatever path that might be.
What follows are 10 poignant career Perspectives that I have gained - the top perspectives that have guided me to where I am today. Regardless of what transpires, what other's think or where I find myself along the path these lessons, thoughts and growth have been the guiding principles of my career gained in staffing/recruitment. I suppose it is time to pass them on. Like all journey's you must begin with the end in mind, and taking a bigger picture view one realizes that work and life are connected. We may compartmentalize aspects but it is vital to focus and find success and perspective. These 10 areas still to this day when I am in the heat of the moment give me the bigger picture that I need:
1. Work/Life Balance is Paramount: We have a culture now with technology that keeps us going all the time. It is essential to let go, unwind, recommit and revitalize. Do enough to get the job done, but realize that life consists of so much more than work. Every now and then I must re-invigorate and renew my commitment to my family, friends and others that are not my colleagues. And I set for myself key goals to achieve in the particular day's work that when done I know I can return to the work tomorrow. Your family will not always be there, and precious moments with children, your spouse, et al, are important times to cherish and hold as sacred. This is not easy. I have had to learn what it takes to "let go" at times.
2. Your Brand Matters: The staffing process yields many moments where you are being pulled in many different directions. Quite simply - you must find time to own the perception that is out there about you. You may not be able to make everyone happy but reputation matters and your brand is the sum of your effort times the results you bestow. Never forget to be thankful to those whom have helped you but drive your success forward with all your passion until you deliver the best outcomes that are possible. Your results are a mighty story and banner of power for your career direction. No matter what anyone says - you have the power to reinvent the brand you carry EVERY day through a positive approach, in how you interact, in practicing the golden rule with others, in short in living a life that you can be proud of.
3. Your Core Message About Your Career Is Developed OVER TIME: The value add you bring day in and day out and the message about the type of work you wish to do, and the type of work you are qualified for that will open up the doors to the next level of your development, your growth, and your passion are developed over time. Many of us want to be like a Star Trek Star Ship and "Warp" our way into the future. Your career is like a living/breathing matter that develops over time. Your desire to climb the corporate ladder is all well and good but you must help your career offering, your product, in short you through your own real time Research and Development push. I have seen so many candidates applying for roles that just wouldn't make them happy. But once they know what TYPE of work they want and what will make them HAPPY the Core Message they carry builds and builds forward. This is the remarkable thing about your career development. You must know which stage of the career you are in and then steadily build your momentum. Then you will gain accomplishments, growth, perspective, and happiness as you are able to communicate statistics that back up your claims. Realizing that your Core Message about your career develops over time is vital for your success. The concept of "Core Message" in your career development is highlighted brilliantly by Orville Pierson in his book: "The Un-Written Rules of the Highly Effective Job Search." - One can see his website here: http://highlyeffectivejobsearch.com
4. You Must Always Be Growing: Every day along the path you are discovering new ways to do things, new perspectives, new growth. Growing means not being upset with yourself if you make a mistake but rather learning from it, building from it, and finding ways to reinvent yourself. Growing is accomplished also over time, and while you do you find a perspective that enables you to tackle similar challenges you faced in the past. Sometimes with this growing comes a few pitfalls and others whom may need their own Career Perspective renewed perhaps judging or evaluating you. When that happens you should be open to feedback, set your ego aside and realize you will not always be "perfect" but you strive for greatness none-the-less. Even Career Greats like Albert Einstein, Steve Jobs and others failed a few times before they learned and found success in an amazing way.
5. Seek Opportunities for Training/Development: When life is prompting you to build new skills it is time to seek opportunities for Training/Development. Hunger for such will grant you new perspective as you learn a new skill, find a new approach and build momentum on topics of interest. Keeping your mind sharp by reading articles, being a sponge for new Best Practices, etc are key to your success.
6. Find Mentors Whom Care About You: A mentor is someone whom guides you and pushes you to be your best self as you talk through various items that you are concerned about. They give you the perspective of another angle you may not have thought about. Indeed, everyone needs a Career Mentor, and hopefully you can find one - whether an old boss, a strong performing colleague, a good friend - all have perspective. It helps to have someone to talk through daily career observations or a check-in on your "path" to your goal. They can help you think outside of yourself and help with key decisions you might need to make.
7. Your Career is Long - Set Goals Over Time: It is essential to create career goals over time. That is - where do you see yourself at intervals - 1 year out, 3 years out, 5 years out, 10 years out and so on. If you can envision it in your mind where you see yourself in due time the goal can be realized. It forces you to think about what it is that you want, and really set the steps to achieve the goals. Having a goal is like a ship with a light-house. You find your direction and you drive forward without hesitation to get there. When you have those days that may drag you down, you are empowered to arrive and that is powerful. No one can stop a person with a goal - one whom has determination, grit, hope and passion to achieve it. Only then can you truly get to where you wish to be.
8. Know Yourself: It is wise to have a good idea of what it is that will make you happy, this idea may seem simple, but it is also counter-intuitive - if you are in a career that makes you happy, you are more apt to shake off the "bad" days and celebrate the good days, all in a pattern and in conjunction with your goals. In fact all these areas are connected. If you know what will make you happy you are going to do all you can to realize the goal and once you are in a position/career that makes you happy, work will be like play making your desires all the more keen to drive to the goal.
9. Your Career is More than the Money: Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs - is a very true concept - click here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maslow's_hierarchy_of_needs. Yes - you need to eat. But your role, your career is so much bigger than the money you bring home. If your work is about the money you miss so much of the bigger picture. When you have a role that makes you happy you tend to do your best work. Where-as if you are miserable you will not. You must realize that timing is a powerful thing, and a bigger picture perspective at times is needed. When you come to a point where your needs are met, and you have found the bigger picture role that makes you feel fulfilled it is then you have found the true meaning of Maslow's Hierarchy concept.
10: Live with Passion & Great Attitude: So much of success is tied to your attitude. If you have a positive attitude and attack with gusto/passion everything that is before you, then your career is going to become what it can be and your potential will be realized.
As I close on this topic that I love so much - Career Growth and Development, owning your career is a key focus area. No matter what anyone says, finding success is as much a lifestyle choice as it is a mojo. Your greatest accomplishments come when you have career perspective. I have been blessed to say that my life is on target to where I wish it to be. Knowing what it takes to have a sound career and my own inward knowledge of my own goals has brought me to where I find myself today. And in a few short weeks I can look out on Lake Tahoe again in 2016, 8 years after finding my way back to staffing, to say Here I am. Grateful, a better professional, and more apt to pursue success somehow. I wish all candidates could find that for themselves as the best candidates I have hired know these 10 Principles backwards and forwards. I suppose Recruiting/Staffing gives that perspective in it's whole. But when your vision is clear there is nothing that can stop your innermost potential. And I FIRMLY believe that.