Some tips for shak­ing off a mid-ca­reer slump

The Denver Post - - JOBS & EDUCATION - By Mor­gan Kast­ner

Feel­ing stuck at work? Af­ter 20 years of pound­ing the pave­ment, it can be easy to feel like you’ve reached a ca­reer plateau. But don’t sit there and sim­ply ac­cept it. A happy work life re­quires an un­der­stand­ing of where you are and where you want to go. This is as true mid­ca­reer as it was when you were just start­ing out.

Mon­ster asked ca­reer coaches for ways you can con­tinue to make progress and truly shine dur­ing the sec­ond half of your ca­reer.

Think of your pas­sions

“Make sure you’re do­ing what feeds your soul. If you’re not, now is a good time to fig­ure out what would, and take the steps to make it hap­pen.” - Lisa Phalen, LJP Con­sult­ing, Phoenix

Make your plan

“Don’t leave your ca­reer to chance; map out a strat­egy for where you want be and how you hope to get there. Es­tab­lish goals for ca­reer de­vel­op­ment, ad­vance­ment and direc­tion, re­vis­it­ing the plan at reg­u­lar in­ter­vals to re-as­sess and mod­ify as your ca­reer pro­gresses and changes.” - Adri­enne Tom, Ca­reer Im­pres­sions, Cal­gary, Al­berta

Grow your net­work—again

“You ben­e­fit by manag­ing your ca­reer, in ad­di­tion to sim­ply do­ing your daily work projects. Take stock of what you are good at, what is im­por­tant to you and what you en­joy, and max­i­mize your time ac­cord­ingly. As part of this, it is crit­i­cally im­por­tant to ad­vo­cate for your­self—speak up, share your ac­com­plish­ments, com­mu­ni­cate what you want and find spon­sors both within and out­side of your com­pany.” - Lori Scher­win, founder, Strate­gize That, in New York City

Reach out to your men­tors

“Con­tin­u­ously en­gage and re-en­gage with your men­tors and spon­sors once or twice a year. With shifts in the mar­ket­place, they can both clar­ify your goals and help you achieve them.” - Jason Levin, ca­reer/out­place­ment coach at Ready, Set, Launch in Wash­ing­ton, D.C.

Build trust by serv­ing oth­ers

“Cul­ti­vate trust [be­cause] ad­vances in your ca­reer will be de­ter­mined by peo­ple who like and trust you. Seek op­por­tu­ni­ties to be of ser­vice to oth­ers—es­pe­cially your team.” - John P. En­gel, pres­i­dent, Knowl­edge Cap­i­tal Con­sult­ing, Sioux City, Iowa

Try some­thing dar­ing

“If you’re stalling in your ca­reer growth and your in­ter­est with your job/ in­dus­try/sec­tor [is lag­ging], con­sider a ca­reer tran­si­tion fu­eled by a mid-level in­tern­ship. The real value of such an ex­pe­ri­ence is get­ting your foot in the door of an ex­cit­ing new sec­tor where growth may be—or be­come—strato­spheric. Take a gam­ble that may pay off.” - Alex Tw­er­sky, ca­reer man­ager/ vice pres­i­dent, Re­sume Deli in Hobo­ken, New Jersey.

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