Career Success: I Am At My Best When

You are no doubt ambitious.  You may well have got the professional qualifications you need or be working towards them.  You’re building your skills and experience.  It feels therefore that all is on track to achieve the success you want.  So far so good you might think.

Well in truth maybe.  Why do I say maybe?  When I am working with clients on their career, most can talk about their work, their skills and their experience.

Yet when I ask them to define what they want from their career, it’s a little different.  Most can give a surface level answer and talk about the generic stuff like money.

Yes money matters to a point.  If you don’t feel like you are being appropriately rewarded for what you do, it will create resentment.  However you do tend to reach a point of indifference.  Research tells us consistently that money in itself is rarely a long term motivator.

Other factors matter too.  These include the work environment; the way people behave and interact as well as attitudes.

A survey by Development Dimensions International published in the UK Times newspaper in 2004 interviewed 1,000 staff from companies employing more than 500 workers, and found many to be bored, lacking commitment and looking for a new job. Pay actually came fifth in the reasons people gave for leaving their jobs.

Do you really know when you are at your best in work?  If you are like the vast majority of people you probably have never given this much thought.  If you have, it’s unlikely that you considered this in any real detail or in a structured way.

So you might be wondering why knowing when you are your best in work is important.  Well if you think about it you are more likely to be more personally motivated, enthusiastic and engaged if you are in the right place, with the right type of people, doing the right type of work.

To help you along, here are a few suggestions to get your thinking started.  Use this as a basis for getting started and develop it to fit your circumstances.

I am at my best when I am working with an organisation whose core purpose I care passionately about

I am at my best when I am working with highly motivated individuals who strive to do even better

I am at my best when I am working as part of a committed team who are proactive

I am at my best when I have a boss who supports and encourages me to grow and develop personally and professionally

I am at my best when I have the opportunity to work on change projects rather than just routine tasks

I am at my best when I have the freedom and flexibility in how I carry out my role and some level of autonomy

I am at my best when under pressure and have to deliver to specific deadlines

I am at my best when I have time to think through the options before reaching a decision

I am at my best when I have time to plan and prepare

I am at my best when I am solving problems or clearing obstacles to achieving results

I am at my best when I’m doing work that is challenging and takes me out of my comfort zone.

The reality is that if you know when you are at your best it will help you to make the right choices in order to achieve the results you desire from your career.  So when are you are your best at work?

Duncan Brodie helps ambitious qualified accountants in industry, commerce and the public sector to achieve more career success.  He invites you to sign up for his free report, The 7 Biggest Barriers To a Successful Career In Accountancy.

About the Author Duncan Brodie

Since 2006 I’ve worked with in excess of 7,000 accountants and professionals in workshops, seminars and one to one helping them land their next jobs and become better leaders, presenters and business partners. Before that I spent 25 years in accountancy climbing the career ladder from Payments Clerk to FD. I’m a CIMA Fellow, Certified Professional Coach and Team Coach Facilitator.

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