Next Challenge Please

If you are ready for the next challenge in your career, you are not alone. Whatever the reason—boredom, limited opportunity for growth, changes in organizational dynamics, or others—figuring out what changes to make in your career, your company, and yourself can be difficult.

How can you go about it?

Start with Self-Reflection

This is an especially good place to start if you are feeling bored or stuck, and is also a great place to start if you are simply looking to figure out how to grow and develop into your next role—and figure out what that role might be.

Identify what is important to you from a work perspective.

  • Name the work attributes that are most meaningful to you—things like challenge, flexibility, fun environment, etc. You can start with a values inventory, such as you will find in one of the links below, to help you identify the top 10 aspects of your work that are most needed for you to feel satisfied.
  • What patterns and themes do you see with the work attributes you identified as most important?
  • In your current job, which of these attributes are present? Which are missing?
  • What types of opportunities, projects, teams, etc. might offer you a chance to do more of what is important to you? Are there community or volunteer opportunities that might meet these needs, to supplement your job?

Identify the types of work and contexts that are most satisfying to you.

  • Divide a piece of paper into two columns.
  • In the left column, list the 10 career accomplishments of which you are most proud.
  • In the right column, describe what made each accomplishment satisfying for you.
  • Circle all the things in the right column that are attributes or skills that you contributed, and underline everything that was a part of the corporate culture/environment/context.
  • What patterns and themes do you see with the personal and contextual attributes you attached to your accomplishments?
    • How does your current context allow you opportunities to experience accomplishment as you have in the past? If those opportunities are limited, how could you change your context (or your attitude toward your context) to gain a sense of accomplishment?
    • In your current role, how are you practicing the personal attributes or skills that you associate with a sense of accomplishment? What types of opportunities, projects, teams, etc. might expand your ability to practice the most satisfying skills/attributes you identified? How will you request access to those opportunities?

How do the things that bring you a sense of accomplishment compare to the values/work attributes you identified in the previous exercise? Are the values/work attributes that are most important to you also instilling a sense of accomplishment?

If there is a gap/disconnect, it may be time to connect with an executive coach to figure out what is missing. Visit the Owen Coaching Network section to find out more.

Define what type of next challenge you are seeking