Does your Strategic Plan include your Career?

Career choices aren’t simply a matter of finding a good job, at an acceptable salary, with appropriate benefits. The quality of your work impacts your personal life, leading to satisfaction (or, conversely, dissatisfaction).

One of the biggest reasons people come to see me for advice, is because they’re contemplating a career decision. Or they’ve made one and think it might have been the wrong one. How can you know what to do without a plan or a strategy?

If you’ve studied business strategy, you know how important it is for companies to embark on the right plan and direct organization resources toward accomplishing its goals. Sustainable business growth and success depend on following the right strategy.

A strategy must be flexible enough to meet rapidly developing marketplace challenges and opportunities. Businesses are successful only when their leaders allow for strategic shifts.

The same principles apply to your personal life. Always start with a clearly defined plan that remains flexible, yet never veers from your core values. Yet it always surprises me how many people don’t know what those are, or have only a vague notion of what truly matters.

Many people are clear about what they don’t want, but not about what holds true value for them. They allow themselves to be attracted by short-term benefits that don’t provide enduring satisfaction.

The quest for meaning in life certainly isn’t new, nor has anyone discovered any quick fixes for universal problems. But harnessing a few tools and theories can make your choices easier.

How you allocate your resources – your time, talent and energies — determines your strategy. The process begins with determining your priorities: What is most important to you in your career? In your life?

Significant problems occur when your strategy fails to align with what really makes you happy. If you allocate time and talent to whoever screams the loudest and offers the fastest reward, you set yourself up for an uncertain and unfulfilling future.

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