Take a Day Off for Your Greatest Career

Jodie Charlop

by Jodie Charlop 82Ox 85C
Executive Career Coach, EAA
July 2012

For many, summer is a time to head out for that next great vacation. You planned your flight, hotel and most likely a list of activities you and your family, friends or significant folks in your life will enjoy. Even for the adventurous and spontaneous, you probably have some sort of working framework about your destination – otherwise, you may end up in some interesting or scary places. 

But how much time and attention are you giving your career journey? In the midst of life and work busy-ness, professionals at all levels often take more time to plan vacations or research new restaurants than they do in designing purposeful and meaningful careers. To share a thought from personal development coach, Jim Roh, most of us plan vacations with better care than we plan our careers or lives – perhaps because escape is much easier than change.

Are you in charge of your professional success or just hoping to enjoy the scenery as you drive along? Just like a great vacation, a powerful and meaningful career takes time and careful planning. Consider taking a career reflection day for yourself. A summer respite may be just what you need to develop a few strategies to accelerate your career growth. Here are a few check-in questions to help you reflect on where you are and consider where you want to go next:  

  1. On a scale of 1 (low) to 10 (high) – how satisfied am I in my career?  
  2. If asked, could I easily articulate my personal career vision?
  3. Do I have an updated resume or CV that I am proud of should an opportunity (internal or external) cross my path?
  4. Do I know my five greatest strengths and, more important, can I communicate them in a way that I am comfortable and proud to share?
  5. Do I believe that the work I do has relevance, meaning and impact?    
  6. When was the last time I had a career growth conversation with my boss, mentor or professional sponsor in my organization? Is it time to schedule one?
  7. Do I have a strong network of professionals (internal or external) that I can easily call upon to create new opportunities for myself?
  8. When was the last time I truly invested in myself – whether a class, a new skill set or a stretch assignment?
  9. How much time do I spend each month developing myself and proactively contributing to the development of the people with whom I work? 
  10. Am I using my time and gifts to my fullest potential?

Take a day for yourself this summer.  Increase your career awareness. Use the reflection time to consider where you are and perhaps make some new choices. With some reflection and proactive planning – your career future can be an amazing first class destination. 

Reflecting on what’s next? Take advantage of a complimentary career coaching session with Jodie Charlop 82Ox 85C.

Jodie, founder and chief coaching officer for
Potential Matters, specializes in working with individuals and organizations that want to achieve higher levels of personal and professional results in their business, careers, or lives.