Time to Take the Wheel – Learning to Drive Your Own Career

June 1, 2012

Do you ever feel like you are not in control of your professional life, as if your car is hurtling down a dark highway at 100 miles per hour, but you are not in the driver’s seat? It’s common for many professionals to encounter this perception when it comes to the direction of their careers. A great deal of well-meaning folks start out in one type of career and quickly find out someone else had another plan for them. When this happens, it can lead to disillusionment that can leave anyone feeling lost.

Fortunately, you don’t have to spin out of control in a case like this. At any point in your professional life you have the ability to turn things around and start moving in a direction you wish to go. Call it your own personal navigation system.

To lead your own career, you need to take some critical steps now.

Step 1 – Take responsibility for your career. To lead your career, you need to accept responsibility for where it is right here and right now. Then you must write down your vision of where you want it to go. Start making a plan today of where you see yourself in one year, five years, ten years from now. Then responsibly start looking for opportunities to achieve a leadership role in your present assignment.

Step 2 – Identify your strengths, weaknesses, and challenges. Everyone has many talents that they bring to the table. Likewise, there are things that need some work in order to improve. As you take steps to better lead your career, start working through the challenges you face, as you build upon your strengths and find ways around your weaknesses. Training, like that offered at Dale Carnegie Institute, is a good place to start working out these areas.

Step 3 – Build your focus on successful leadership. At every opportunity, seek out ways to be a leader in your assignments and projects. Learn to take charge of your career and you will be better able to work alongside other leaders in your industry. Associate with other leaders and learn to develop more confidence in your abilities, never letting anyone make you feel inferior.

Step 4 – Recognize your achievements. As you move forward as the driving force in your own career, take time to look back on all you have accomplished. Leaders understand that you must celebrate achievements in order to fuel your future successes, and learn along the way. Honor your past mistakes and welcome your future challenges with a positive outlook.

As a growing leader, you can continue to be in control of your own destiny. Take the wheel now and enjoy the journey!

This post is brought to you by the good folks at Dale Carnegie Training of Central & Southern New Jersey. We would love to connect with you on Facebook and Twitter @CarnegieJersey.

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