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How to Create a Sustainable Career

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According to the Harvard Business Review, many employees spend the better part of their waking hours engaged in work that gives them nothing more than pay. And so, our passions can linger in the background, contrasting with the mundaneness of our jobs, and lead to lack of motivation and productivity.

As the Harvard Business Review also points out, the Urban Dictionary’s definition of ‘career’ is, “an affliction whose symptoms are loss of life & liberty, general purpose misery, and resentment towards those who are unaffected”. This is particularly true for the two thirds of modern-day employees who are disengaged at work rather than enjoying a fulfilling career.

Defined as a career that is aligned with your interests, strengths, and values, crafting yourself a ‘sustainable career’ should provide you with opportunity for ongoing learning and continuous renewal.

A sustainable career is one that evolves with you as you grow, encompasses your skills and interests, and paves out a clear and fulfilling career path ahead. In the early stages of your career, the concept of crafting a ‘sustainable career’ may feel a little premature. But regardless of where you are in your career journey, starting to plant the seeds of a sustainable career is one of the best things you can do for long-term success and satisfaction.

What is the key to building a sustainable career that allows you to thrive, rather than survive?

Take the reins
Crafting a sustainable career can only happen when you really take the reins and take charge of its shape and direction. Actively seek out businesses with whom you would like to work, whose values align with your own, who offer the right balance of financial reward, and job satisfaction.

Identifying your strengths, applying these to your role, and communicating them with your line managers means your workload and career can be tailored to you and your unique skillset. This can also demonstrate to your employer a level of productivity and genuine interest in your role – a win-win!

Foresight is a wonderful thing
Every industry and sector is constantly changing, whether it be due to technological advances or shifts in operations sparked by the pandemic. So, it is increasingly important to think about where you want to be in the long-term and to plan ahead to avoid getting diverted later on. Write down your objectives and ask, “What do I need to do to get there?” and determine the actions to achieve it.

Every day is a school day
With constant technological, economical, and societal developments, follow your industry and stay up to date with the latest trends, patterns, skills, and topics. Be committed to continuous learning and self-improvement as this will enable you to build a career that is a great match with your skills and knowledge, leaving you more engaged and fulfilled.

A sustainable career is one that evolves over time and with you, so to avoid job fatigue and boredom, it’s crucial to keep your personal and professional skills up to scratch. There are many online webinars, workshops, courses, and training opportunities available for each level of seniority.

Know your worth
Identify and document the ways in which you add value to your organisation, noting what you have learned and accomplished. Over time, this will enable you to see exactly where your values lie and help you identify any changes you might need to make to remain aligned with your wider career goals.

A sustainable career makes the most of your expertise, gets the best out of your abilities, and is a long and fulfilling one. It’s never too early to start crafting your ideal career, for a working life without meaning or passion for your vocation is a fruitless one. Once you have a game plan, get in touch. We can help match you with the right employer to help you on your path to carving out a nourishing and sustainable career. 


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