Have you ever considered your work history patterns? If you contemplate certain roles or experiences over your working life, do you see recurring patterns or themes? Are these patterns serving you? Are you building on your skill set year after year?
We can learn so much about ourselves, our career and our choices when we look at the history of our working lives.
Taking a mental audit or writing down what’s worked for you and what’s not, can result in aha moments of clarity, often shining a light on your next move, what needs to change or really how far you’ve come in your career.
- Devise a timeline, starting with your first ever role, all the roles in between till the present day. Yes, even the jobs you had as a kid, even if it was babysitting or at the local café, it all adds up to your story. Write down the job, the tasks you performed, what you liked and did not like. Be sure to also include any experiences, interactions with bosses or colleagues, good or bad, that may highlight any common themes.
- Reviewing your work history list, what aspects of each role felt most aligned for you? Perhaps consider if a particular task that you have performed through most of the roles you’ve had, when did you feel in flow? Start noticing where the moments of flow are recurring.
- In which environment and positions you’ve held have you honestly felt you were playing to your strengths. When we go to work each day exercising our strengths and working in our zone of genius, it creates a sense of fulfillment and congruence. Notice this and capitalize on it.
- As you look over your history, it’s time to get real. Have you taken roles purely because you wanted to stay in your comfort zone? If you’ve purposely accepted a position knowing that you could ‘just fly under the radar’. What was your motivation in doing so? How did this feel? If you’ve chosen this time and time again, consider stepping out of your comfort zone and showing up, expanding your skill set and progressing your career.
- Now let’s think about your interview skills. If you’ve ever taken a role, expecting it was going to be the position you’ve always wanted, your definite next best career move but months in you’ve discovered it’s just not for you. Replaying the interview and the interview process in your mind, what red flags were evident? It’s crucial to know your strengths, your communication style, how you like to be managed and what culture you best thrive in. Take the time to consider how you can improve your interview questions for the future, ensuring you’re directing them around what’s important to you, while delving deeper into your organization research for a well-informed view.
Taking the time to review and audit your work history allows you to capture key learnings to have a more informed view of your strengths, when you feel in flow, improvement on interview skills and environments where you succeed. When choosing your next move or considering your next promotion, bear in mind what you do you know for sure about yourself, your style and your work history.
To find out more tips or go deeper into this subject and much more, contact Dione McCurdy- Career Coach and Strategist.
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