What Is Career Management?

I got an email from a friend in California who had the question below. By the time I was done responding I realized I needed to share my thoughts with each of you. His question:

“How can we get more focused on Career Management in a way that helps our job search?”

My response:

Hopefully we can help people realize career management is the new “job security.”

When I talk about career management, I talk a lot about (a) networking and relationships and (b) personal branding.

We have to internalize the idea that we are transitioning every few years, that there is no company loyalty, etc. We have to realize that taking care of Numero Uno is the new normal. This is what career management means to me. Once we understand this, the answers to the questions change.

Q: What tools do we use?

A: Before, it was “whatever my employer gives me,” and now it has to be “I’m getting my own tools, and realize they have to be portable as I go from employer to employer.”

Q: What does education mean?

A: Before it was “get a degree,” now it is “get a Pluralsight account, or something similar that teaches you current, applicable skills.”

Q: How do I add value to my company?

A: Before it was “I do a good job and make my boss look good” to “I am strengthening (both size and quality) my network, which adds value to my role, my boss, and my company.”

Once we shift our thinking with career management we can then identify the right tools to help us, and I can’t think of a better tool for career management than a personal CRM to help me grow and manage my network with real relationships (none of this “I have umpteen tens of thousands of ‘connections/friends’). And because I’m totally biased, JibberJobber is my personal CRM of choice 🙂