In today’s labour market, you are effectively a company of one. You don’t have to be an entrepreneur to think like one and organisations are encouraging employees to be entrepreneurial. In fact, the NHS has just launched a Clinical Entrepreneur training programme.
Indeed, talk is growing in the corporate sector around the concept of self-management/distributed leadership/holacracy to free up the energy of employees and encourage innovation – see this Harvard Business Review article.
Innovation aside, the era of lifelong jobs and secure pensions is slowly but surely coming to a close. If you want to have a fulfilling career you now have to find your own way in the market place of jobs and turn uncertainty into opportunity – just like an entrepreneur.
Daniel Priestley, in his book The Entrepreneur Revolution, makes a great case for why this is the way forward in terms of conscious leadership through business that will improve our global economy as well as free us from authoritarian, hierarchical modes of organisation and nurture more heart-centred, value-based business practices.
Which is why you have to see yourself as your own boss, lending your services to an organisation, team or an individual who may by title be your “boss” or line manager.
As a result, there is, of course, a conflict of interest between what you want and what your boss/manager wants, particularly if you’re good at what you do and want to leave them!
In the video below, I talk about 3 things I've learned in becoming my own boss over the course of my career.
This isn’t to say that the relationship has to be adversarial. On the contrary, the model (of distributive leadership) is built on values of freedom and collaboration, where individuals bring their talents and skills to be transformed into something of even greater value in collaboration with others. This requires of line managers and leaders to encourage their team to use their talents and to nurture their development i.e. to use a transformational leadership approach.
On the other hand, it means that as individual, you will have to take greater responsibility for yourself and your development. You are not there as a subordinate to execute tasks, you are there to share of your skills and talent so that they can be harnessed in service to something bigger through a collaborative process.
So how can you take responsibility for your own personal and career development?
Regular review and reflection on your work and career direction are key ingredients of a conscious career in which you are your own boss. You would operate as the CEO of your own company and your regular "boss" would be one of your “Board of directors” or trusted advisors depending on the nature of your relationship.
Get clear on which direction you want to take with your career before consulting or informing your current boss and enlisting their support when the time is ripe. Hopefully, if you’ve shown diligence in your career deliberations and made a case for why your career aspirations are right for you, right for them and the company and right for a bigger picture that they identify with, they will support you in your next steps.
Of course, it is possible that any doubts you have about your career/job may be a form of escape fantasy or a cry for help. TThis could mean that something dysfunctional is present in your work environment or wider life picture and that the upset is clouding your judgment. If uncertain, it’s important to proceed with caution and diagnose by exclusion, otherwise, one may act make rash or ill-informed decisions that will cause regret at a later stage. A regular personal reflection practice should help to guard against this.
Three things for you this week:
Thing 1: NICE is recruiting for new Fellows and Scholars (professionals in health or the allied professions to either do a small project or be an ambassador for quality care). I say a few words about the programme here (on NICE’s Facebook page where you can also find out more).
Thing 2: LinkedIn has launched a new learning platform with over 5000 courses all available for free until the 30th of October. I’ve tried a few and found them pretty solid and helpful.
Thing 3: If you’re a high achieving professional and want to run a diagnostic on your career, it may be good to have a talk. Book a FREE coaching conversation with me here. Pick the free consultation option.
I hope this helps. If you have any reflections, please, share them in the Wise Wednesdays Facebook group!
Until next week.
Are you a high achiever and feel that you are not using your full talent? Are you ready for your next level of greatness in your career and life? Email email@example.com to arrange a free 30min consultation with. Or if you are ready to move ahead, book a Career Turnaround Now session at Harley Street here.
You will be able to get clarity on your career direction, identify self-sabotaging patterns that might be holding you back and recover momentum and energy.
In either case you will be able to find out whether coaching is for you and whether there is an opportunity to work with Amina over 3-12 months on a career and life transformation to use your talent fully and feel both success and fulfilment.
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