Career Sleepwalking Can Be Bad For Your Health. What Should You Do?

This week LinkedIn released a fascinating study that shows how many of us tend to “sleepwalk” through our careers. As the research shows, almost one in four Americans are drifting along in their career, not sure what to do next. And this is happening while almost half of Millennials now want to find a new job (or want gig work) to make more money.

As I discuss in detail in an article in Forbes, this is a problem you can avoid. Careers today are more dynamic, less predictable, and longer than ever before. This means all of us need to manage our careers differently. (You can read all about my personal career journey on LinkedIn.)

Look at the dynamic way careers grow today.

When I was young, employees who changed jobs every few years were called “job-hoppers” and most employers wouldn’t hire them.

During my 40 year career I had six different employers and wound up working in almost every function of business. Was it predictable, designed, or progressive?  Not at all. It was a series of experiences, each of which taught me new things and led me to the next.

As I discuss in the articles above (and will be described further in a book I’m working for next year), sleepwalking can be bad for your health. Your earnings may stagnate, you won’t feel excited about your job, and you may not feel fulfilled.

Careers today are a series of developmental experiences – and there will be times when you pause, stagnate, and stand still. The secret is to “wake up.” Convince yourself you’re capable of personal reinvention. Meet new people, find a coach, and learn. In today’s job market, these are the characteristics employers are looking for.

The secret to career success is being open to personal reinvention.

I encourage you to read these articles (and here) in more detail. Managing our careers is an important topic for everyone at work today.