So What Goes in a ‘Plan B’?

Yesterday, I mentioned the necessity of having a ‘Plan B’ as part of truly managing one’s career. Having well-developed and thought-out plans for how your work-life throughout your time in the workforce will lead to having more confidence, as well as control, over how they play out.

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To give you an example of why – and how – this works, is a story of someone I’ll call John, who works in an IT role in a fairly large company. While John has enjoyed his job, he feels that the culture is too strict – he likes movement and is starting to resent the increasing longer work hours – and he has desires to move up into a lead role. John has found that he is becoming apathetic in his job, not caring much. One day, John shows up to work, only to be told that the department is too ‘heavy’ so he, along with two others, were let go.

John, along with his two ex-coworkers, decided to go to lunch to commiserate and support each other. As John sat listening to the other two talk badly about their boss and the company (“what losers – they’ll be sorry”; “I gave them my all and this is the thanks I get”; “why me – Larry never does anything”), he just sat there not saying much. Why? Because John knew he had a plan to follow for how he would go about finding another job; he had taken time to keep on top of his work and to plot out his future. He had a “Plan B.”

So, what goes int a Plan B? Here are some examples, so you can develop yours:

  • listing of your skills, aptitudes, passions
  • listing of all work experiences, no matter how small
  • your strengths (the SWOT is a good tool to use)
  • your values
  • your work expectations
  • your preferred work environment (top-down, bottom-up, open, quiet, etc.)
  • companies you want to work for (if not yours); identify their culture, jobs they hire for, job requirements, identify hiring managers
  • ensuring you have references in place
  • resume is up-to-date
  • identify people you can network (or keep in contact) with who you can contact
  • job search strategies, i.e. job search engines, professional associations, social media sites, groups, print, etc.
  • short-term goal (up to one year)
  • mid-term goal (1-5 years)
  • long-term goal (5+ years)

Of course, you may add to this list; ask yourself “What would I do if I lost my job today?” and then go into problem-solving mode; you’d be surprised at how many ideas you could come up with – these go in your plan, also.

Take control of your career today – don’t go on autopilot and leave it up to chance. It’s your responsibility to do so. Your future career success depends on it.

Committed to Your Success Coaching & Consulting focuses on workplace happiness and organizational success. If you need help gaining clarity on your business or career goals, why not get some help – stop the struggle and call today to get started! http://www.cyscoaching.com or barbara@cyscoaching.com

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