There’s no doubt we’ve all been there at some point during our professional existence (and if you haven’t, please tell us your secret!) and it’s not a desirable place to be.
By “there”, we're referring to the imposing Career Crossroad
; a job junction where we have to re-evaluate what our trajectory looks like moving forward
and how we find that elusive, overlapping “sweet spot” – when what we’re passionate about
collides with what we do best and the ability to make a living out of it.
Often, we stay in job ruts thinking there is no room to move, that significant change is impossibly overwhelming, or our ambitions are, well, too ambitious. And on top of that, it’s very much human nature to internalise these feelings and proceed to run like a hamster on a wheel, getting into a spin and in the end, going nowhere.
As organisational behaviour professor, Herminia Ibarra
once quipped: “by far the biggest mistake people make when changing careers is to delay taking the first step until they have settled on a destination.”
Cue career coaching
and the underrated benefits of hiring a trusted advisor who can add priceless value to your development as a professional as well as encourage you to break free from those self-constructed barriers that are keeping you from fulfilling your ultimate potential.
Here are four reasons why having a career coach can be a secret weapon in your quest to find greater job satisfaction.
Keeping you accountable and motivated
It’s certainly nice to be the recipient of praise and validation, but sometimes hard truths are necessary to keep you on the right track. A career coach not only keeps you motivated, they will also ensure that you remain accountable during your journey.
Trying to balance a full-time gig with your life outside of work can be challenging at the best of times but throw in the investment required to build something new or make a monumental change in direction and it can feel like there are never enough hours in the day.
By helping to keep you focused and assisting you in identifying priorities, a career coach can be the objective and effective supporter you never knew you needed.
Building confidence and helping define your value proposition
Ancient Chinese philosopher and writer Lao Tzu was onto something when he documented the famous proverb, “the journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step”
but it’s often taken for granted how confronting or overwhelming that tentative, initial tip toe forward can be.
As human beings, the fear of failure is one of the most paralysing mindsets we harbour and without some form of encouragement or validation, so much of our potential may lay dominant and unexplored.
Hiring a career coach presents a unique opportunity to gain an outsider’s perspective on what you bring to the table and how your defining skill sets and attributes can help you stand out from others in your field.
They are also able to help you develop a succinct proposition statement that works to define your value and highlight your professional points of difference;
for example, why you do what you do, what sets you apart from others, how clients and colleagues would describe you and what you bring to a team environment.
Nailing your value proposition can assist in landing that dream role by setting you apart from other candidates.
Launching a career in a new field
It’s crazy to think many of us “commit” to a career path in our 20s; who really knows themselves entirely after the first couple decades of life? Our mental, emotional and social acumen is only beginning to flourish and the decisions we make in our younger years may not be reflective of the person we find ourselves to be
or in line with the ambitions we have in our 30s, 40s or even 50s.
The lifespan of our professional life is a long one and finding someone who can help you identify and establish yourself in a new field, with the objective of finding greater job satisfaction, is invaluable.
Whether it’s working with you to identify ways you can upskill
or hone your existing offering or pinpoint what drives you in your professional endeavours to help establish the ideal path to self-fulfilment, a career coach can be that missing puzzle piece in the bigger picture.
Processing complex problems
When the going gets tough (and the tough are feeling a bit stuck), finding a reliable sounding board who helps
silence a cacophony of career conundrums can be akin to finding neural Nirvana; we all know it’s borderline impossible to address and action internal conflict or confusion if you can’t even hear yourself think.
A career coach can help you break through the din by offering trustworthy advice that supports your navigation through huge, potentially life changing decision making processes.
They will have your best interests in mind, a deep understanding of your ultimate objectives and a well of experience that you can draw from.
Before you reach out to a career coach, get in touch with Upskilled today for information and inspiration on how online study can help you make a professional change.
Katie Quirk is a PR and communications professional who has almost a decade of experience working with clients across a myriad of industries under her belt, including several in the education, government, not-for-profit and business sectors. In October 2019, Katie launched her own consultancy Katie Quirk Communications and is passionate about continuing to use her professional skill set to help inspire, encourage and ignite positive change within the community.