Everywhere I eavesdrop (I can’t help that people shout while yapping on their cell phones), I hear nothing but trash talk about the economy, prospects of finding a job or the future. We’ve got to stop acting so gloomy and powerless.
But how, you ask, when everything is so glum and out of control? Good question and one I’ve been asked every time I’ve given a speech these days. To help lift this veil of darkness that has blanketed the planet, I’ve compiled my observations of how you might be perpetuating bleak foreboding and not realize it (like any type of change, it begins with awareness) and created my “Stop Doing That & Start Doing This Instead” list.
For openers, stop starting your sentences with “In this bad economy …”
I know, you know and now we all know the latest stats of surging unemployment and plummeting net worth. So stop setting the stage for every conversation that inevitably leads to droning on about the bad economy.
Two, stop fretting that you won’t be able to get another job if you lose the one you’ve got because you’ve been with your company for umpteen years.
Why worry about something you have no control over? You made a choice to stay put. It’s been good and still could be. Instead, if you do need to look elsewhere, you’re perfectly capable of coming up with a fine explanation of where you started at your company, what you’ve accomplished and how you’ve developed professionally while there. End of story.
Three, stop wringing your hands because you don’t have a degree.
Again, why get bent out of shape over something you can’t change – the past? If you’re so inclined to change that, now is the time to embellish your skills and knowledge.
If you are not so inclined or want to take classes but not necessarily get a four-year degree, pick up a book like “300 Best Jobs Without a Four-Year Degree.”
Based on information from the U.S. Department of Labor, author Laurence Shatkin created a list of such jobs expected to have high growth through 2016. They include veterinary technologists and technicians, medical assistants, social and human service assistants, physical therapist assistants, environmental science and protection technicians, preschool teachers, environmental engineering technicians, court reporters, bill and account collectors and vocational educational teachers.
Four, stop spending time on wasteful activities that have little or no return on your investment of time. This includes blindly sending out resumes and letters and asking everybody you know for a job.
I get letters all the time from people offering me their services. They want green jobs, teaching positions – you name it – and say things like: “My resume speaks for itself…I am willing to relocate…” I can’t figure out why they waste their time sending me their resume. What do they think I’m going to do with it?
Instead target the people and organizations who have a need for your services.
Five, stop going around telling everyone, “I haven’t lost my job yet.”
Quit anticipating the worst. Instead prepare for what is possible by making decisions that can create your desired future. Apply a lesson from Peter F. Drucker, the “father of modern management.” As William Cohen, one of his students and author of the book, “A Class with Drucker,” explains Drucker’s philosophy: “You can’t predict the future, but you can create it.”
Create yours now. There’s never been a better time or reason.
Andrea Kay is the author of “Work’s a Bitch and Then You Make It Work: 6 Steps to Go From Pissed Off to Powerful.” Send questions to her at 2692 Madison Rd., (POUND)133, Cincinnati, OH 45208; www.andreakay.com or www.lifesabitchchangecareers.com. She can be e-mailed at: andrea@)andreakay.com.