Friday, January 4, 2008

Thriving at Work in 2008

Happy New Year!

This is a time of potential and possibilities and you might find yourself wondering: How do I make this the most successful year of my career? I believe that it happens when we focus our attention and develop ourselves in three areas of competence.

The first competency is Performing, which is the capacity to do whatever is in front of us as well as possible and to recognize that what we do now has impact on the future. Performing is the key to insuring that we are consistently adding value with our efforts. The skills associated with performing are: Taking initiative, knowing your job/field as well as possible, creative problem solving, written and verbal communications, conflict resolution, team dynamics, and discipline. When fully developed, this competency results in excellence and a sense of mastery.

The second competency is Designing, which is the ability to picture and create a future built from our talents, aspirations, and values. Designing needs to be practiced, not just when we need to change jobs or careers, but as a consistent and regular part of our work lives. The skills needed to develop this competency include: Values clarification, goal setting, gap analysis, decision making, development planning, and market research. When fully developed, this competency results in clarity and confidence.

The third competency is Changing, which is the ability to adapt to changing circumstances and our capacity for changing our minds and behaviors when necessary. Our ability to change is how we navigate successfully from the present to our designed future. The skills needed to develop this competency are: Understanding of the change management process, keeping your resume and interviewing skills current, networking, intelligent risk taking, and listening. When fully developed, this competency results in agility and resilience.

Each of the competencies is important, but we thrive when we are tending to all three. By paying attention through formal or informal study, development, and practice, you’ll not only do better, but you’ll find yourself feeling better and more able to handle whatever the future holds for you. Best wishes for a healthy and prosperous 2008.

Mark Guterman