Raise your hand if your company doesn't have a career development program and yet you have managed to develop your career over the years.
How'd you do it? What was the secret that worked for you but seems to elude organizations?
Oh, and for those of you that DO have career development programs, how frequently do your participants assume there is a guaranteed promotion or some type of significant long-term reward after completing these courses?
Cultivating a career shares some parallels with the higher education system in that people are convinced that once they've been set on a path that there is assured outcomes that elevates their job.
Another parallel they share is that those that dig in, learn the business they're in, get their hands dirty, show insatiable curiosity, maintain a sense of humility, cooperation and a focused desire on making the business better. These are the people that succeed and didn't need HR to build out some complex obstacle course that is supposed to lead to becoming the next Vice President of the water cooler.
I'm not saying that career development doesn't have its place, I've helped design one or two that are very effective. What I am saying is that like most things, getting where you want to be is around 97% mental and 3% creating your own "career road map".
Don't wait for one.... make your own, you'll be glad you did.
PS. Get a mentor
This article first appeared in Chris Shyrock's Linkedin Blog
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