At this time of the year, everyone is a sage, prophet, visionary. All over the net individuals, some wise – others not so much, are predicting top trends for 2011. I won’t be doing anything like this because in my eyes there is nothing different about January 1, 2011 compared to December 31, 2010. Just another day. Business will be done the same way (unless there are some major legal / tax code changes in this calendar year!).
What I will do is reflect on the last couple of years and the many individuals I have watched suffering, either unemployed and waiting, or employed and…well, still waiting. I’m not so sure which is worse. Turnover across the board has decreased as those that are employed are happy to have that security, even if they are not completely satisfied. Meanwhile, they sit idly and watch opportunities, which might have been phenomenal in the long run, pass by. Companies, which are already in many cases hesitant, have been even more careful during this downturn. As a result, overachieving / overambitious employees are underutilized and told to slow down and play their ‘role’. The outcome is suboptimal for both sides.
Case in example of someone I know – my friend ‘Bob’ (you might remember my previous story about Bob) – an individual that will remain anonymous, but one that has been highly educated at premier institutions, very talented, and one of the most ambitious individuals I know. Too ambitious for this slowdown and the vision of his current employer. Bob brings unique skills to his employer that are for some reason overlooked. So what has happened. Bob has taken the proverbial ‘bull’ by the horns and decided to move on, even if the move may be deemed by all those around him as being “way too risky”. I mean, why should Bob leave a high paying job, with a good amount of tenure and seniority, near family and friends, for a new job at a new company somewhere far away!? Well… that’s my friend Bob – and I’ll stop there to answer.
Is complacency better? I think not. But, what if…? What’s with all the questions??? All the ifs and buts have just one answer – if this opportunity doesn’t work out, there will be others that will. The world has become a global village and, only if you dare leave your tribe, you might, just might, have the opportunity to become a wiser individual, in addition to becoming a much more well rounded and more sought after professional in your field. This world did improve and progress because of individuals that challenged ‘today’ and surpassed the rhythm of the present. My friend Bob is speeding up and hopefully he will surpass the economy – I know he is not alone and that’s why I decided to dedicate this last 2010 post to him and to all of you that are just like Bob.
My message for the new year: the economy is improving but not fast enough. Be proactive! If you feel unappreciated, underutilized, and unsatisfied with your current situation, don’t jump right away but continue to network, stay open to new opportunities, and don’t be afraid of jumping when the opportunity does come. If you have skills and ambition, your chance of success anywhere should be limitless. And yes… Happy New Year!