Do you feel like opportunities are passing you by while you are stuck in the same old position at work? Are you looking to get into a new career? Have you put your career on hold and sense now it’s time to jump back in…hopefully where you left off? I have three tips and a story for you today that might help. Apply them and your life will be different a year from now.
I was at my cousin’s engagement party where I met the groom-to-be and we discussed briefly about his work. He is a young 30-year-old manager at one of the big banks in Australia. He is in charge of his bank’s outsourcing – that is, contracting jobs to third parties to take advantage of expertise or lower labor costs abroad. As an example, many phone centers for Australian businesses are now outsourced to India or the Philippines, where the labor market speaks English. The role of outsourcing manager requires my future in-law to be sensitive to different cultures and aware of business, political, legal and economic trends, and then match those variables with his company’s vision and objectives. The natural question I asked next was…
“How did you get into the role of managing outsourcing?” There is no university degree in outsourcing. You cannot study a course in school to qualify for this role, which I imagine pays handsomely. How does one get into such a job?
His answer is what I want you to learn from. He didn’t start out in outsourcing. Instead he got a degree in accounting, worked in a large accounting firm which gave him many projects, one of which was at a bank. The bank liked his work and he must have liked the bank, the rest is history – now he manages for them!
The first tip for your career is this: use your degree (or former qualification and experience) as a ticket into a good company. Don’t worry about getting the “perfect” job. Don’t be concerned about an ideal job with ideal pay in ideal conditions. Your university degree probably cost you and your parents somewhere between $50,000-$100,000. Most people do not end up in a role that their studies qualified them for. So what is your degree for? It’s an expensive ticket. Try to use it!
Once you’re in the door, you will rise through the ranks or meet people who change your destiny, like this accountant who became manager of outsourcing. Get in a job where you can make genuine friends and talk about other stuff besides work. Who knows where it will lead? God promised to order your steps (Psalm 37:23), but you have to take some steps. He will walk WITH you, but He will not do the walking FOR you!
If you’ve been out of your career path temporarily, due to pregnancy, children, some other pressing need or just by choice, you probably will be looking to get back in where you were. That may not be realistic. The boss will determine that you have been out of the game and send you to the back of the line. A former chef now becomes a kitchen hand. A manager now becomes repairman. It hurts your ego. But don’t see it as a setback, see it as a stepping stone.
Many men and women of God have been sent to the back of the line. Isaiah said, “He made my tongue like a sharp sword and hid me in the palm of his hand. He made me like a sharpened arrow and hid me in his quiver” (49:2 GWT). Isaiah was saying, “I’m sharpened and ready to go!” But God said, “Back in the quiver you go.” That’s not what Isaiah wanted. Joseph was hidden in a dungeon till it was time for Pharaoh to have his dream. God needed Joseph right where he was! But Joseph did not neglect his gift when he was in a less than ideal place; he used his gift even in the dungeon. When he heard of the baker’s and butler’s dreams, Joseph didn’t make an excuse to not work, “I interpret dreams only for important people” or “How much can you pay me for interpreting your dreams?” He used his skill in a place he felt he didn’t belong.
You got to use your ticket to get through the door. Everyone has a ticket – a degree, a skill, a gift – which will eventually lead to your destiny, if you use it. “A man’s gift makes room for him, and brings him before great men” (Proverbs 18:16 NKJ). But you might feel like a sharp arrow hidden in a quiver for a little while. Humble yourself while you’re tucked away in His quiver. Recognize every field of knowledge is getting updated quickly. The pace of change is fast, but you’re not out of the game, so long as you get back in and work hard!
My dad often said, “Showing up is half the battle.” Just present your ticket, get through the door, and start showing up. Then God will show you off! That’s called favor. One act of favor will do more for you than a thousand hours of labor.
In my next blog I will show you two more tips on how to increase favor and get a promotion on the job. I am meeting with men to mentor them about men’s issues. If you’re interested, join us or contact me. To be updated, subscribe to this blog.
What tips can you share on “rising in your career”?
Our ministry has a one-hour teaching called “Get on Track with Your Career and Call“. For further encouragement, get any of 4 CDs or DVDs from “Pursue Your Call“. Titles that may benefit you:
Get On Track with Your Career and Call
Steps to a Fulfilling Career
The 3D Principle: Identifying the Call of God
The 5 Anointed Ministries: Understanding Prophets & Teachers