We all born with some innate tendencies, interests, and capabilities but certainly not the experiences of life when we start breathing out and in outside the mother's womb. Each such counting enriches our experience initially for life survival and later combined with the survival of overall existence that includes personal values, social relationship, interpersonal dynamics, family, self-esteem and overall quality of life. For most of us, the initial phase of our lives is highly dependent on our parents and immediate environment whereas the majority of it then is governed by the choices and decisions we make during our education period and professional life. No one on this planet can say that one can always take the right decisions. We all make errors irrespective of our intellect, experience, and age but they are called mistakes when repeating those errors more than once. The following article is written to understand common mistakes we make in our career and how they become mistakes and sometimes turn out to be a blunder.
- Choosing an Internship
Opting a right internship during any professional course remains a big challenge for most of us. We either go to the organizations chosen by our institute per their SOP or we end up taking it up where we get it easily or any of our classmates goes for. Let's understand the Internship first to decode the importance of it and know how critical it is to undergo with utmost sincerity. An Internship is just not a formality to get a certificate to be presented to the institution for passing your course rather is the only chance before embarking a professional journey to get exposed to different aspects of the corporate world and check out our interests, strengths, likings and elementary inclinations. If we fail to do our internship in the right spirit and judiciously, we might have to take any role that is offered to us without knowing the broader implications of it in our career. Once this starts with us, the ongoing vicious cycle begins in the form of taking up whatever is coming our way and then our career governs mostly by the external factors.
- Understanding your role
Once we get our degrees in hand, the majority of us remain anxious to get a job. This seems relevant also in view of big education loans, social pressure and fast-paced life wherein everyone is trying to prove their worth, the capability to get hired, and earning potential. This anxiousness, as explained earlier sometimes make us compelled to take whatever is coming on our way without understanding and viewing comprehensively. However few of us chose to show courage to better understand the role in the overall function and sincerely discuss its leveraging capacity with all possible resources. Knowing the distinctions between different roles and evaluating them in tune with your interests, strengths, likings and elementary inclinations paves the way for a rewarding and satisfying career. Discussing the same during any stage of an interview is one way of doing it but having an in-depth informal discussion with someone from your specialized function will be more beneficial because by doing so we can decide better on the offer/proposal.
- Sometimes changing a job during early association is a better idea
There is a myth and misconception that changing a job soon is not liked by the employers. But it is so when leaving a job happens almost every now and then with mostly all the roles and assignments taken up by us. This also stands relevant when your leaving an organization or role does not have substantial reasons; those fit the standards of the employer, to do so. However in a few assignments if we leave a job during the early period of association with considerable and satisfying reasons, indicates your decision-making capabilities and tells your employer indirectly about your clear vision and what we really want in your life. In the absence of this, we may be considered as a candidate without any set direction, perseverance and sticking to our own decision which is perceived as a negative trait by the employer because it might hamper their overall organization progress.
I never rejected any candidate in my career purely on the basis of his early leaving any organization. The few from such candidates even mesmerized me with their reasons for opting separation. In one instance I met a very young candidate having only 3 years of experience who left a very lucrative assignment with a prestigious fortune 500 company because he was offered a promotion in the hierarchy and good salary hike but no expansion of role.
- Patience and Perseverance is a key
Jumping onto the conclusion soon sometimes proves to be jeopardizing and self-sabotaging. We all sometimes of others remain in a soupy situation, but it does not mean that upon having such circumstances, we take our step back from our decision. Let me quote a reference of a natural calamity like an earthquake. What happens when it takes place and ruins many lives and present a disaster in front of people in many parts of the world and our country. Despite losing their dear ones and assets they have given their lives to, they start again from scratch, they eat, they talk, they also laugh after some time and take their life back on the track. How does this happen? This happens because they believe it to an act of GOD and term it as natural calamity wherein they don't have any control. Similarly, if we change our style of looking at any situation wherein we have done a lot of careful analysis and due diligence before taking any decision but it did not go the way we want it to be, it may also be considered as an act over which you had no control. We have to develop this rationality before giving up something. We all can see to a certain extent, few may too long, few may little shorter but none can say that one has chalked out an entire path with zero chances of failure. These calamities happen with all of us, and we are then required to maintain our emotional balance and show attributes of patience.
Before taking big decisions including leaving an assignment or job in a rush of emotional turbulence or by cursing yourself for taking up it, you should consider your personal and professional responsibilities in hand. What best you can do in the given situation and how you can execute the plan to the best of your capabilities and remain contended with a feeling of fulfilling your part judiciously. This is the only thing that is in your hand in any such phase of career and life.
- Your previous experience with your Senior or colleague
Most of the people have the tendency to follow the footprint of the crowds. I would not say that it is not yielding but what? This is a million dollar question. Yielding from such decisions may be of many types including everything from a new job to better salary & perks and designation but sometimes proves to be our biggest error which later turned into a continuous cycle of mistakes. During our professional journey, we all make some good relation and relish their warmth rest of our life. Sometimes these relations come up with some recommendations and proposal for an opportunity in their current organization. Here we might tend to do errors if we purely go on the basis of your previous experiences with the relationship or some emotional reasons. I am not saying that the man who has approached you is calling you for a wrong assignment but important here is to note that he is in a different and new flora and fauna. He can recommend or offer you a position based on his former experience with you, but every set up is unique. Each set up brings different challenges, and your colleague may not be so much assisting or comfortable for you in this altogether new assignment and ecological unit. Hence your decision should primarily be based on your career aspirations, detailed analysis of the organization's vision, financial strength, expansion plans, feedback from current employees, work culture and your overall fitment in that. Trust me; your colleague is another employee there. He chose to recommend you based on your strength in the organization you worked together earlier but it is you who has to judge your strength and weakness in light of the new challenges that may be thrown over you.
- Avoiding Corridor Gossip is a good idea
Always remember that even walls absorb what you speak. The air sucks what you even think. Corridor gossip is a common phenomenon in any social settings. No organization till date is spared from this phenomena. Being a social animal, it is our fundamental requirement to interact with people but you should have an intelligent eye to understand when the discussion slips into gossip especially related to the organization. How to avoid corridor gossip has no perfect solution instead it requires your emotional intelligence to judge a situation and accordingly comment or take it in a different direction. Thumb rule is same as written in the beginning lines of the paragraph.
To assist you, I would recommend working on your listening abilities more. Besides, a smiling face and sincere body language can take you long in your career. The most important mantra is to have loads of work and busy schedule. Your sound listening abilities shall help you in socializing yourself with working colleagues even in your utmost busy schedule.
- Leaving a job purely in anticipation of something better
We should always keep in mind that we are not purely alone in this world. Many things and people are related to us when we sail turbulence or any difficult situation, the cascading effect reaches to all related to us for sure. I am not saying to follow your dreams but with an application of comprehensive planning and see through to the best of your capabilities. As such, there is no full proof plan ever made on this planet. Despite putting all intelligent efforts and plan well, you may end up reaching no man's land but still, you will be contended to plan well and can attribute your failure as a calamity beyond your control. By doing so, you get the natural courage to face the situation with better balance. Leaving your recurring earning merely on the basis an idea or some casual promises made by someone without having a sincere dialogue might open up a channel for overall deteriorating life performance.
- Start loving your own wife
An old saying is that the other side of the mountain always looks greener. Sometimes we all admire the working environment and culture of the organization where our acquaintance is working or we overheard through someone else. As already explained, each ecosystem has a different set of challenges. I always suggest people understand their role, challenges and way outs in their current setup. This is the only way otherwise you may develop the tendency to give up whenever things in hand get tricky to crack. You should put your entire effort to manage the situation at your end and leaving should be based on other factors specifically if your emotional health and survival are in question. Otherwise for any job-related hick up which is purely based upon functional competence to deal with, to be taken up as a challenge. This will define you as an efficient and balanced professional. So start loving your own job rather than admiring others.
This is not a comprehensive list of career mistakes. I have shared a couple of glaring mistakes based on experience with corporate. I want you to read this article twice to have a deeper understanding of my perspective and avoid these mistakes.