10 Ways to Create Your Own Urgency
Reflect on why you're not happy at work. Is it the work itself? Is it the team you work with, the organization as a whole or is it something separate from work, that were you to land in museum nirvana, would still be with you?
Try only thinking about yourself. When there's actually a job on the table that's more than a pipe dream, you can worry about finding an affordable rental, your aging parents, good school systems or the new intriguing human you just met.
Give yourself a deadline to tweak your resume. Make sure it actually sounds like the person you are now. Make sure it reflects new skills and experiences along with your career wants and desires. And offer yourself a reward for a task completed.
Ditto your LinkedIn page. (I know, really? But it is one of the ways 21st century people study one another.)
Pull out your current job description and re-write it, not for your boss, for you. Make it read like the job you really want. Ponder how it's different from the job you currently have.
Talk about career moves with your kitchen cabinet, your posse, your group of colleagues dedicated to supporting one another while telling each other the truth. Once you share your game plan and enlist their support, the fact that you're "looking" is in essence public. For some, having a group hold you accountable makes for progress.
If sharing with a group puts you off, try working with a career buddy. Collaborate on resume writing and reading, for example, or share job descriptions. Sometimes a fresh pair of eyes helps us see what we're avoiding.
When you're commuting or waiting in the doctor's office, scan the job lists. Look for language that makes you comfortable.
Apply, apply, apply. What's the worst that can happen? That you won't hear anything? And that really is the worst because it's a kind of neglect and unprofessionalism that in the age of algorithms and email is unforgivable.
And don't apply to anything that doesn't at least list a salary range. There's too much on your plate to worry about going down a rabbit hole to discover they can only pay minimum wage. One of our 2019 Leadership Matters interviewees is Karen Carter. Carter is smart, dynamic, and co-founder of Canada's Black Artists Networks Dialog. She told me, "I try to do a job interview every two years or so because it's a muscle that needs to be exercised." That's Carter creating her own urgency. How will you create yours?
******** In the United States, this week is Thanksgiving. Many of us will gather with family and friends to eat, touch base, reflect and simply say thanks. In that spirit, thank you to all our readers in 153 countries around the world who share in this endeavor of being good leaders for museums and heritage organizations. Joan Baldwin