Careers advice - Breaking into Better Job

Breaking into Better Job
Two factors may be pulling at your nerves—looking for a new job and going up the ladder in your own present organisation. You can achieve both or either.

You can be a bigger success in your present job, make more money and derive more satisfaction for having achieved something worthwhile. It does not matter whether you work in a small office or big one. The basic approach remains the same in both cases.

One basic myth about success in job needs to be consigned to the dustbin. It is: keep your nose to the grind. If you do, and keep on doing a good job, be sure no one will pay attention to you. The reward is that the painfully you keep on slogging in the same old slot. Smugness is lethal to success and advancement.

Here is a workable, realistic formula you can use in helping yourself to achieve a better position, whether within your present organisation or elsewhere, and to earn more. You can play variations to suit your local conditions.

One way to achieve favourable attention is to seek advice. Also, it is about the only way you can ever get into discussions with the men above your own boss, without seeming to go over his head.

Don't seek advice in the form of an answer to a problem. Seek it in the area of "I have a constructive idea, I think will be of benefit to the organisation."

This means that you are focusing on your own success factors-what they are and how you can apply them in improving your position, not just for the present, but year after year. Long-range perspective pays.

Focus on your achievements, your greatest strength. It will automatically guarantee you a salary increase within a reasonably short period of time or keep you on the list of favourites.

Instead of spending time worrying or studying your mistakes, learn to think on paper by listing your successes. This is called thinking loud. The analysis of your past achievements indicates, that you are a go-ahead person, not a stay-putter. When you are looking for a new job, never ask for a job. Instead, ask for advice.

When you ask for a job, you are setting yourself up for a rejection. The executive who interviews you will end up by saying that it was nice talking with you but he is sorry that he does not have anything at the present time, but he will keep your name on file.

From periphery, you enter the inner circle. A call may come any time.

Ram had not the slightest hope of landing a position on a par with that of the men to whom he wrote. But he knew one significant fact, which later proved itself out.

After talking with the executives, in turn, and describing his background and achievements and future hopes, for which he found that many of them picked up the phone, called other men in their company, and said, "Could you spare a few minutes to talk to a man I have in my office whose experience is in your area?"

Their request, as top executives, was usually granted at once-not next week. The rest depends on your skills of personality and persuasion.

Each time Ram talked with an executive, he passed along a description of his strong points, which his self-appointed adviser could use in making further contacts for him. Because these points were relayed from one responsible executive to another, they had the ring of believability the minute Ram appeared on the scene to pursue the course of the next interview. This way he smoothed his own path in advance of the next interview.

You do not have to memorise your achievements and descriptions of them. Because of the groundwork laid, you will be able to talk about them. Or write them down briefly whenever required. A word of caution. Do not give the impression that you are speaking from rote. Parroting is not knowledge.

The secret lies in determining what is the best that is in you and pursuing it as in trying to remedy weaknesses, pin-pointing strengths and projecting aspirations.

There should be a touch of realism in what you project. Be practical. Vanity and boasting will bring you crashing down.

Are you going to learn how to paddle the canoe forward, away from the quicksand and swamps of your present, to a far more fertile shore? Or are you afraid of rocking the boat?