Why You Should be a Lifelong Learner

James has been an accountant for eight years with just one company. He believes this is proof of his reliability, company loyalty and dedication - admirable traits to have.

And James thinks he’s going to be here for the long-haul.

But James has just been made redundant.

All of a sudden, his long-term plan is up in the air.

But, he figures, with his track record, how hard could it be to side-step into a similar position at another company?

Unfortunately, James finds it nowhere near this easy. Employers look at his resume and feel like he has flatlined. They can’t see how he has expanded his horizons to develop any supplementary skills or demonstrated any kind of growth over the past few years.

When you look closely at yourself, do you feel like your career has stalled too?

Past performance is no longer everything

In the 1980s, employers focused heavily on performance as an indicator of who is right for a role. In fact, Claudio Fernandez-Araoz says the mantra was “the best predictor of future success is past success.” You might have been led to believe something similar.

But today, employers are looking for something different. Portability, self-awareness, determination and above all, lifelong learning are the traits at front of mind. These factors are not just what will get you hired now, but help you have a sustainable career, and see you able to find a new job whenever you need it.

Become a lifelong learner

According to a report by McKinsey & Company, between September 2009 and June 2012, there’s been a significant increase in the number of skill sets needed in the workforce: from 178 to 924.

Jobs are now more diverse, and employers favour those people whose skill sets span multiple industries.

If you want to stand out and stay employable long-term, a dedication to learning throughout your life will give you the best possible chance.

In his book The First 20 Hours, Josh Kaufman shows that a set process can help people become competent with a new skill in just under 20 hours.

According to Kaufman, the process is:

  1. Define what you want to learn
  2. Break down the skill into its basic components
  3. Identify the critical sub-skills involved in reaching your goal
  4. Eliminate any obstacles to practicing
  5. Commit to at least 20 hours of deliberate, focused practice

Want to find out more about becoming a lifelong learner so you can develop a sustainable career? Please reach out, or stay tuned for the release of my upcoming book.

 

 

Keyword: lifelong learner

 

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Greg Weiss is Australia’s leading career coach. He is the author of “So You Got The Job! WTF Is Next?”. The book prescribes a proven, practical 7-step guideline for new employees so they succeed, rather than fail their probation periods and beyond. Find out more about the book at https://www.wtfisnext.wtf
He is the Founder and Director of Onboff an online training and coaching platform that helps HR specialists, coaches and recruiters to deliver exceptional onboarding and offboarding experiences for employees.
He also hosts The Keep: The Employee Experience podcast and runs CareerSupport365.

What is Your Definition of Career Success?

Mark’s an intelligent man. He did well in school - so well in fact, that he had the option of doing anything he wanted.

But, Mark didn’t do what he wanted. Instead, he chose to please his parents and started a law degree.

Mark’s a lawyer now. In fact, he’s just made it to partner, and it seems like Mark has it all.

But Mark’s miserable. And he’s beginning to take it out on everyone around him. He hates who is becoming but can’t seem to get himself back on track.

Have you ever taken a path you thought you were supposed to, only to realise it was never what you wanted?

Living according to someone else’s definition of success is a mistake

Mark has done what many of us do - choosing to follow a path laid out before us because we think others know better or know something that we don’t.

This three-box model of career success where you study, work in one traditional career for your entire life and then retire doesn’t suit everyone, and it’s certainly becoming the exception, rather than the norm in our contemporary, fast-paced times.

The key to your successful career, can’t be determined by anyone else. A fulfilling career means something different to everyone because it relies on maximising those factors that an individual finds enriching.

There is no one-size-fits-all solution and choosing a career to please others certainly won’t get you there either.

Finding your own definition of career success

Eric Barker, author of Barking Up the Wrong Tree, suggests defining success through subjective measures. According to Barker, those are:

Achievement: Do you feel like you’re winning?

Legacy: Do you feel like you’re influencing others in a positive way?

Significance: Do you feel like you’re needed by the people closest to you?

Happiness: Do you feel like you’re enjoying life?

With the help of my career coaching and his own definition of success, Mark decided it was time to down tools on his law career. It’s the best thing he ever did, and his new career in the film production space fulfils him in a way his law career never did (and never could).

Would you like some help identifying your own definition of career success? Contact me or get your hands on my new book - coming soon!

Keyword: definition of career success

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Greg Weiss is Australia’s leading career coach. He is the author of “So You Got The Job! WTF Is Next?”. The book prescribes a proven, practical 7-step guideline for new employees so they succeed, rather than fail their probation periods and beyond. Find out more about the book at https://www.wtfisnext.wtf

He is the Founder and Director of Onboff an online training and coaching platform that helps HR specialists, coaches and recruiters to deliver exceptional onboarding and offboarding experiences for employees.

He also hosts The Keep: The Employee Experience podcast and runs CareerSupport365.

How Workers Feel After Being Told They Have Been Made Redundant

How Workers Feel After Being Told They Have Been Made Redundant | CareerSupport365

image credit: http://www.chicagonow.com/

CareerSupport365, a leading and innovative provider of outplacement services in Australia, polled white-collar workers who had been made redundant. *

Here is what we found:

  • 78 percent of respondents felt their employer did not share enough information about the changing business conditions which led to their redundancy.
  • 90 percent of respondents felt guilty or ashamed about being let go.
  • 60 percent of respondents felt angry with their employer for putting them in this situation.
  • 95 percent of respondents did not want to see a career transition consultant on the day they were made redundant.
  • 40 percent of respondents had been offered outplacement services.
  • 67 percent of respondents who were not offered an outplacement services program would have accepted one, had they been offered.
  • 92 percent of respondents intended to keep in frequent touch with their former work colleagues.
  • 70 percent of respondents were embarrassed to be seen at an outplacement service provider’s office.

What can we learn from this?

How Workers Feel After Being Told They Have Been Made Redundant | CareerSupport365

1. When your business looks like it might be making people redundant, then it’s best to keep staff informed. Employees pick up on clues of impending bad news such as the arrival of management consultants who are engaged to conduct a business review; significant sales downturns; new leadership and so on.

2. It’s best to clearly explain the reasons for the redundancy. If it is business related, then articulate that clearly.

3. In the case of redundancy, reinforce how the decision has nothing to do with the individual’s performance, but everything to do with the business situation.

4. Keep the employee posted about their possible re-deployment, if that is a genuine option.

5. Be aware that most employees are going to feel bad about themselves. So provide them with emotional support that they can access on their own terms while they transition/depart. This includes those that have been made redundant and also those that stay.

6. Be aware that most employees are going to feel angry with their employer. So it's paramount that employers do what they can and acknowledge this feeling. Act compassionately. Support them because it's right to do so.

7. Note that anyone can have a public voice nowadays through the many social media channels like FaceBook and Twitter and sites like Glassdoor and JobAdvisor. Do what you can to mitigate employee anger and any ensuing damage that could be made to your brand and reputation.

8. Give people the support of a career transition or outplacement services program.

9. If you do provide outplacement services, don’t waste your business’s money on paying for the outplacement consultant to meet the people on the day they received the news of their redundancy.

How Workers Feel After Being Told They Have Been Made Redundant | CareerSupport365

image credit: https://delimiter.com.au

10. Expect that your remaining staff will keep in touch with some staff members you have let go – either personally, via social media or via e-mail. So how you treat your departing employees will impact on the engagement and productivity of those who stay.

11. Don’t be surprised if there is push-back to take up a career transition program which involves commuting to an outplacement office for delivery of the service. Make it easy for staff to access. There are many outplacement companies in Australia. Where it is inconvenient for them to access, think of the option of providing 'virtual outplacement' support.

12. For the staff who have been made redundant, being able to connect with their career transition consultant also impacts the success of their outplacement service program. Provide the option of accessing a suite of services that the affected person can access online from home or anywhere else.

Sample size and composition: 186 white-collar workers, ranging from middle to senior level management. Respondents worked in Sydney and Melbourne in IT, health services, professional services, and hospitality.  Research conducted between November 2014 and March 2015, and June 2015  to November 2015.

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About the author:

Greg Weiss is the Founder of CareerSupport365 and The First Few Seconds. He has almost 30 years success in HR and in career coaching people. The CareerSupport365's Innovative Outplacement Packages can be found here.

Career Transition Management: How one person secured their ideal job in 3 weeks. | CareerSupport365

Career Transition Management: How one person secured their ideal job in 3 weeks.

Career Transition Management: How one person secured their ideal job in 3 weeks. | CareerSupport365

image credit: http://blog.jooble.org/hk

When her employer made her redundant recently, Ashlee had been in the same job for over 5 years – and her prior role for 12 years. To complicate matters more so, she had not gone for an interview for 18 years. She had no job interview skills. So she was understandably anxious and fearful about her situation.

Fast forward just 3 weeks from being made redundant. By following the career transition advice we gave her, she confidently accepted a job offer within 3 weeks of commencing her career transition management program with us – with the added bonus of being offered increased remuneration!

Three success factors that make all the difference with a career management services program

1. Openness.

Career Transition Management: How one person secured their ideal job in 3 weeks. | CareerSupport365

image credit: https://www.psicologiamsn.com

They say that when the student is ready, the teacher will come. We meet many people who are in the midst of various stages of career transition from their former job. Around 30 percent of the people are skeptical of the coach's career transition advice and sadly do nothing. Around 50 percent of people do some aspect of their 'homework'. Around 20 percent decide to seriously take on board their coach's advice. In the case of Ashlee, she was keen from the get go: a single Mum, like most others, she also had responsibilities, a dependent family, and a mortgage. What made her different to the others was her unquestioning willingness to be open, to learn and to follow the path I promised her had worked previously for many other Participants we coached before her.

2. Deciding that her job was to get a job.

When I could see she was open to being guided, I made it very clear to her that her 'main job was to get a job'. I've also emphasised this to other Participants of our career management services. But what made Ashlee different to many others was that she decided to really take this on. She committed. She had a fair clue of the direction she wanted to go, knew her strengths and went 'full bore'. An introvert, yet very affable, within days of her receiving the news of her redundancy, she frequently networked with some of her former work colleagues; reached out to industry connections; watched her required online course modules, took notes while watching the modules and while she was being personally coached – she soaked up all her career transition advice especially about job interviewing skills; and applied to jobs online. She learned about one job vacancy which could utilise her industry skills and knowledge.  It was that job which she eventually landed.

80-20 Rule. Career Transition Management: How one person secured their ideal job in 3 weeks. | CareerSupport365

image credit: http://www.microchannel.com.au/

3. Focusing on the 80/20 rule.

Ashlee is a no nonsense person. She knew the type of job and the industry into which she wanted to transition. So rather than mess around on extraneous things as people can do when going through career transition, she focussed in on what she needed to do: and used the principle of the 80/20 rule.

In fact she reminded me of the main principle of the book "The One Thing: The surprisingly simple truth behind extraordinary results" * the essence of which is, "What's the ONE THING I can do such that by doing it, everything else will be easier or unnecessary?" 

To her, the ONE THING was excelling in an interview. Instead of spending the time going through all her coursework, she focused in on perfecting her interview technique. We spent 2 career coaching sessions specifically working together on up-skilling her in that ONE THING – specifically focusing on the job description’s selection criteria. I got her comfortable enough to practice behavioural interviewing with me and then on her own. This was her huge leverage point. She practiced so much that nothing would seem like a surprise to her at interview. And nothing was.

When providing career management advice, I suggest we all can learn from Ashlee. We can encourage our other coaching clients to take heed of her three success factors. When they do they and the Coach find the interaction very, very rewarding.

* "The One Thing: The surprisingly simple truth behind extraordinary results" can be read on Kindle, Paperback or Hardcover

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About the author:

Greg Weiss is the Founder of CareerSupport365 and The First Few Seconds. He has almost 30 years success in HR and in career coaching people. The CareerSupport365's Innovative Outplacement Packages can be found here.

Outplacement Services for Remote and Non-urban Employees as well as City Dwellers | CareerSupport365

Outplacement Services for Remote and Non-urban Employees as well as City Dwellers

Outplacement Services for Remote and Non-urban Employees as well as City Dwellers | CareerSupport365

image credit: Getty images

A high profile client with operations around Australia made one of their Far North Queensland employees redundant. Ordinarily, employees who live outside the main economic centres like Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane, would be unable to receive any form of career transition support. No outplacement firm has offices throughout all of Australia. Instead our client was able to provide our unique 'virtual' outplacement offering to their departing employee. It helped the client uphold a duty of care and their values. It helped the employee land on her feet and made her feel that her former employer cared. She has now happily secured employment elsewhere, with the help of her program via CareerSupport365.

Outplacement services for employees who live outside Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra, Hobart, Adelaide, Darwin, and Perth

As the Founder of CareerSupport365, upon its inception, I wanted to ensure that anyone, anywhere could get access to outplacement services, regardless of living in Sydney or any other main city, or wherever they live in Australia.

So rather than set up offices in many different locations, with rental overheads that would have to be passed on to the client, I decided that the best way of delivering this was to flip outplacement on its head.

We authored and produced contemporary and practical content that any departing employee would really ever need.

Rather than take expensive office space, we decided to deliver CareerSupport365’s career transition services via a secure online platform.

We offered that each Participant, regardless of experience or hierarchy, would be provided individual access to all online content for 365 days – this explains the 365 in our brand name.

We also blended in hours of pointed and practical career coaching via proven meeting platforms including Skype, Google Hangouts, and FaceTime.

Outplacement Services for Remote and Non-urban Employees as well as City Dwellers | CareerSupport365

image credit: www.sochealth.co.uk

Problems of Traditional Delivery of Outplacement in Australia

Among others, traditional delivery of career transition services has the following issues:

  • 40 percent of people who were provided outplacement did not even show up to commence their outplacement services program due to distance issues and the inconvenience of commuting.
  • 70 percent of people who attended traditional office-based (often group sessions/workshop-delivered) outplacement services, dropped out after their first experience.

For remotely based, non-urban dwelling people, these figures would clearly be far higher.

Benefits of a more modern, technologically driven outplacement services offering

In contrast to the figures above, at CareerSupport365:

  • Over 60 percent of our Participants lived outside Sydney, where most of our Australian career coaches presently reside;
  • Yet, 90 percent of all Participants actively engage in their outplacement services program;
  • In excess of 80 percent completed the main cores of their online modules, which led to them having better LinkedIn profiles, improved résumés, and overall greater likelihood of being noticed by Recruiters and Hiring Managers;
  • Over 83 percent of Participants including those who lived outside Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Darwin, Hobart and Adelaide got a job offer within 6 weeks of completing our program.

Support your remote, non-urban departing employees as well as those who are city-based

While the Central Coast is not too far from Sydney, it can be a 90-minute hassle for people to commute to an office so they can experience their career transition program.

For 20 years, 'Brian' commuted for much of his work life to North Sydney. He told his HR Manager that he would have not taken up an outplacement services program had he needed to come to Sydney for it.

However, he happily and successfully engaged with his CareerSupport365 online outplacement services program and Skype career coaching sessions. In his late 50s, from being in Property Services with the one employer, for so many years, and unconfident about his next step upon being made redundant, Brian successfully worked through his program with the support of his career coach and landed a role in a similar field closer to home.

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If you would like to find out more about CareerSupport365’s career transition and outplacement offering, please visit our packages here or e-mail us via enquiries@careersupport365.com.

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About the author:

Greg Weiss is the Founder of CareerSupport365 and The First Few Seconds. He has almost 30 years success in HR and in career coaching people. The CareerSupport365's Innovative Outplacement Packages can be found here.