Managing Your Career
Jim Martin and Abigail Schroeder
Over the course of our careers, we have seen many young professionals get their first job and proceed to go on autopilot, assuming that one job will naturally follow another and that happiness and fulfillment will result. This is rarely the case. All too often, professionals find themselves stuck at mid-career with no clear idea of how to go forward. They are in a job that is okay but not where their real passion is. They find themselves on a career track that is not fulfilling for them. At that point, it is hard to back up and start over. The key for you as a professional is to know yourself and take responsibility for your career decisions early on. Mentors and colleagues can be key resources to help you make those critical career decisions, but ultimately it is up to you.
Before you can effectively manage your own career, you need to understand the person for whom you are managing it—yourself.
In our opinion, there are four decisions that are critical to your life’s path: (1) Whom will you choose as a life partner? (2) What kind of work will you do? (3) Where will you live? (4) Do you intend to live an ethical life? These decisions will have an extraordinary impact on your happiness and the route your life takes. They also set the context for your career.