Five Ways to Expand Your (Career) Thinking

By September 28, 2021Leadership Development

Are you proud of what you have achieved in your career but not sure what to do next? Do you need help with seeing what is possible?

Some years ago when my parents wanted to downsize, it was a flat market. Nearly all the estate agents tried to sell their house with a picture from the front. It was the one who showed it from the back garden, who made the sale. Same house, different view.

Here are five ideas from recent coaching conversations on how to create a different view:

Allow yourself to think big. Really big. Much bigger than your usual view. Hold and inhabit the bigger space for longer. How does it make you FEEL? Often we discount our ideas, our hopes, our aspirations too soon. Wannbe CEO? Let the bigger picture take hold, and plan from this bigger place on how to develop yourself. Then move in this direction.

Assume the job title hasn’t been invented yet. Ten years ago who knew that careers in social media were going to arrive? What’s coming next and how can you get ready? Self awareness is key. Monitor what keeps you feeling alive, when you feel great, name the things which don’t need to get onto your “To Do” list. Your new job title is hiding within this list of energising ingredients.

Shift to a different mountain range for a new view. Not sure the next job, especially if it is a sideways move, is the right move? Challenge yourself – does it matter? The more important consideration is, will it give you a different view? With different connections, conversations and relationships? From here you might see a whole new range of mountains (possibilities). From here you can find a new mountain to climb.

Find a different focal point to your story. Have you always told your career story in a particular way? For example, you say you have leading large engineering projects. Challenge yourself. What is your underlying, ever present gift?  What if the underlying theme were not engineering but collaboration? What if it were not providing a service but problem solving? How does this change your narrative, and expand who you might speak to next?

Poach an idea, a lens, a persona from elsewhere. Love customer service? How could you be the Mary Portas of your company? Love innovation? How would Richard Branson approach your goal? Do you want your people to thrive? What would Jacinda Ardern do? In your dreams, who would you be and why? How can you wear their wings and, in your own context, learn to fly?

How do these five ideas land with you? 

Same house, different view.

For me, it seems that all of these ideas require a different level of self awareness and self ownership of who you are. From this you can shape what you bring to the career table and clarify where you want to go. If my experience sounds like it could help you do this and gain a different view, get in touch for an exploratory conversation.

The view in West Kirby my parents enjoyed from their retirement flat

 

Gill How loves to work with managers, executives and professionals to help them to evolve, stretch and grow their leadership capability. She is a Master Executive Coach and innovative Leadership Developer who works both internationally and in the UK.

We have just started the second programme of our Women in Transport Leadership Programme, Lead, with a third planned for January. Here is what current participants say:

“The LEAD programme is giving me access to time, space and tools that will make me more confident and focused on my career path. Being able to go on this journey with a wonderful cohort makes it even more rewarding and provides amazing support.”

Bernadette Sachse, Network Rail, Stations Transformation Insights Lead

“LEAD is such a worthwhile and valuable programme. The topics explored and support provided by the group and coaches creates a world of opportunity for your development.”

Emma Hext, Jacobs, Senior Associate Director of Transport Planning

“The LEAD programme is an excellent training course, offering a coaching approach to developing your leadership skills, building confidence, establishing a personal brand and defining how you wish to move forward with your career in a way that suits your personal leadership style and development aspirations.”

Amy Nichols, TfW, Rail Programme Sponsor

Get in touch for a coffee, real or virtual, for an exploratory conversation.

Like this content? Sign up here for Gill’s monthly blog newsletter.

Photo credits: Pexels

The innate you is always there to call on
Gill How

About Gill How

Helping leaders grow, step up and deliver outstanding results

Leave a Reply