It’s not enough to just invest in professional development, to speak several languages or to reach new status in cutting-edge companies in order to rest assured on a promising career. It is also important to learn how to avoid certain frequent traps that stall or even destroy careers worldwide. Take a look at these traps and find out how to avoid them.
1. Specializing too much in an obsolete process. Many professionals become specialists and so become hostages of processes on their way to extinction. This is very common in technological positions. Try to diversify your technical knowledge and follow the trends so your résumé does not become obsolete as well.
2. Taking a job offer because of an advantageous financial pay. Remember that there is no such thing as a “walk in the park”. If the salary offered to you is superior to the average value found in the market, this may signal problems with the position or with your potential hirer. Do your research over and over on your new employer!
3. Family pressure over your new position. I know several professionals who took a new job because their family wanted to move to a beach town or even to another country. However, such a situation is usually unsustainable. I always say that the family is our support, but it cannot be our “boss”.
4. Status or company reputation. There are companies with departments that are highly efficient when working up their image. That does not mean everything is necessarily true. I’m stating that no image campaign survives a few interviews with real life clients and employees when it does not have a real life foundation.
I suggest three basic items to help you make your career choices. This list came to me after a lot of sweat and even some stumbling:
a) Do not take an offer that will go against values that are dear to you.
b) Check if the offer is compatible with your career anchors (I will write another post to explain that).
c) Make sure your choice will demand increasingly more complex levels of your most important competences.