For a recent WashingtonExec Federal Business Council discussion, Right Management’s Shelby Olson shared her expertise on how to proactively manage and “love” your career.
An experienced executive coach and career management professional, Olson has helped 2500+ individuals across hundreds of organizations with the development of their careers. Her clients have ranged from individual contributors to those at the senior executive level.
Over the course of the presentation Olson explained that today’s “career ladder” is more like a “career jungle gym.” The reason for this change is that there is no longer a formalized or obvious process of advancing in your career due to M&A activity, globalization, technology, and short-term strategic focus of organizations.
The result of this change is that individuals must take charge of our careers rather than hope someone else can manage them for us. What this means is that those hoping to advance up the “career jungle gym” must be aware of global and socio-economic trends, have high emotional intelligence, be highly networked and cross-networked, and always work to maintain their personal brand.
Olson placed great emphasis on the importance of maintaining a personal brand. A personal brand, which should be short, simple and easily understood, is a point of differentiation from others with similar backgrounds and experience. Having a great story to tell about yourself gives you a greater Unique Value Proposition (UVP). A personal brand should also be memorable and a clear expression of whom you are.
Olson concluded her presentation with brief tutorial on how to properly present yourself on social media, particularly LinkedIn. Olson believes that as the younger generations who are more connected via social media move higher into the workforce, a strong presence on social media will be important in moving up the “career jungle gym.”