August 22, 2013

From having a Career to Careerprenuer

"Do What You Love"

   ©iStockphoto.com/marekuliasz

Lately I have been thinking a lot about the term,  "Careerprenuer" and what it really means. 

In my twenties, a career was something you did as a grownup and were supposed to do for a long time…. (yes, I was the victim of my conditioning). If anything, a career was a means to an end and a necessity for owning all the material items that we as humans, covet so much. To be perfectly honest, I probably didn't give much thought to my career as a whole, because I was too busy working in the job itself and letting life pass me by.

By my late twenties, things changed and I began to focus more on jobs that presented the sort of challenges, I would enjoy. However, I never gave a second thought to job security, the company I worked for or if I was a good fit. 

Rather, I was more interested in the role that I was employed to do, what I could bring to it and what sort of difference I could make in it. While other people were playing office politics and planning their next holiday, I was thriving on the joy of developing the business, growing sales and improving customer service. 

"Let yourself be silently drawn by the stronger pull of what you really love. It will not lead you astray." - Rumi  

However, returning to University as a mature age student gave me time to think more deeply about my career and what was important to me. Over the years I have refined my strengths and improved my weaknesses, acquired new skills and talents and redefined myself into a better-rounded version of me. And whilst I celebrate all my previous career successes, I realise that I have arrived at a place, where, having a career is more about self-management, self-direction and making career choices that are not just meaningful, but honour my own sense of authenticity and work ethic.

Which brings me back to the topic of careerprenuer-ship…..  


                                                                                       
©YECtv


This video with Alexia Vernon of The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) sheds light on What is a "CAREERprenuer".

Two years ago I decided on my next career path, which is why I decided to complete postgraduate studies in Internet Marketing and Online Public Relations and develop my own online presence. And now that I am nearing graduation and getting ready to commence interviews, I thought I would share my insights on what careerprenuer-ship means to me.


What being a Careerprenuer means to me


Careerprenuers don’t accept just any job offer and they don’t sit around waiting for one to be offered to them. Instead, they:
  1. Make their own opportunities happen because they realise life is short to do otherwise.
  2. Own their own voice, welcome constructive criticism and learn from their mistakes.
  3. Know what they are worth yet are realistic about which jobs they can apply for. 
  4. Are willing to up-skill, network and seek advice to get into the field they wish to work in.
  5. Have a unique sense of self, style and belief, because they are comfortable with who they are and what they stand for.
  6. Are not afraid to say “no” to job invitations or offers that may not be right for them.
  7. Are focused, prepared and actively seeking the right opportunity.
  8. Don’t allow themselves to be coloured by false labels (e.g. you can only do sales), limitations (e.g. you are too old),  negativity (e.g. that won’t work) or fear mongering (e.g. the company is cutting jobs).
  9. Don’t get sold on spin, hype or the promise of big shiny things.
  10. Take responsibility for their actions and their choices.
  11. Realise that interviews are an opportunity to sell themselves, demonstrate their competitive advantages and shine.
  12. Give back to others that share the same inspiration for finding happiness in a career (which is why they make good hiring managers) and/ or their own venture.
So don’t just do a job, take charge of your career by adopting the mentality of a careerprenuer. You will thank yourself for it.

Disclaimer: This post has been based on my own personal learning, experiences and education. It is intended as a general interest article only and not formal advice of any kind. If you require career advice then please seek assistance from a qualified career advisor or counselor.
     

8 comments:

  1. Great article Julia, Enjoyed reading this one. :)

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  2. Hi Julia, Thought I would stop by. I had know idea what a Careerprenuer was until I read this post and watched the video. It gave me a lot to think about. Thank you.

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  3. Hi Julia, I am currently studying at Uni and working as well, but I often think I would like to run my own business as well. I totally agree with point number one, in that you have to make your own opportunities. No-one else is going to do it for you. You have to do it yourself. Thanks for an inspirational post.

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    1. Melanie, thanks for your lovely comment. Good luck with your studies and making your own dreams a reality.

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  4. Julia, this is a solid package of key work ethics, based largely on focus, drive and personal responsibility. Great stuff.

    However I don't know why Ms Vernon only mentions Gen Y (in the clip I saw), because these ethics and ideas are not really new, and will always be important.

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    1. Hello Bruce, Thanks for your comment. I understand where you are coming from. I must admit I am a Gen X-er (not a Gen Y-er) and I think the ideas in the video clip, cross all generations.

      I believe, Alexia refers to Generation Y mainly because this is her main audience (Alexia, if you are reading this, correct me if I am wrong). Alexia Vernon authored the book "Awaken Your CAREERprenuer" (http://www.awakenyourcareerpreneur.com/. She is also a member of the Young Entrepreneurs Council (http://theyec.org/) - an invite only organisation for inspiring and successful young entrepreneurs.

      The main reason, I love Alexia's video is because it encompasses what I think we should all be thinking about, in terms of having a more fulfilling career, whether that be working for someone, working for ourselves or doing both (which Alexia mentions at the end of the clip).

      I see so many people disillusioned with life and their careers, and often all that is needed, is a little bit of inspiration, to spur them on to find a more meaningful existence.

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  5. Hi Julia. Wow! Great article. I particularly liked your 7th point "Careerpreneurs are focused, prepared and actively seeking the right opportunity"...really great insights here. Where do you see yourself going now into the future?

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    1. Hello, Glad you liked the article. And a very good question.

      My goal is to capitalise on the best of both worlds, by (1) having a career in digital marketing (or similar role) and (2) running a small consulting and training business, as a sideline venture.

      I know there is a general perception, that you can't do both, or you may appear disloyal to an employer. However, I don't agree with this way of thinking. I have always put my employer first, I love going to work and I think having a rewarding career is something to be proud of. Running a side-line venture is my way of giving back, keeping my skills fresh and staying current. I have spent a lot of time working out how I will be able to manage both and I know that it can be done. In fact I have many friends who have a day job and run their own companies - it's just getting the formula right.

      You will hear this a lot from me.... but we only have this life to do the things we want to do. I don't mind failing, but I do want to live my life fully and utilise all my talents and capabilities. And if along the way, I can inspire and make a difference to others people's lives that will just be the "icing on the cake". :)

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