Our identity can become wrapped in what we do as a job, and when this is no longer there, our confidence and sense of purpose can take a hit.
This is why it is so important to take time to reconnect with who we are and what is important to us.
This reflection can seem overwhelming, especially at a stressful time if the redundancy was unexpected or unwanted, so take it one step at a time and ask yourself the following questions:
Why do you want to work?
Of course, money and financial security is a big part of this. Hopefully your redundancy payout allows you a little breathing time to test the waters on a new path, to a new job or career.
We all have a sense of purpose that is connected to our values and strengths. These strengths and values should be kept in mind when considering why you want to work and your ideal job/career path.
For example, if making a difference is your core value, what does making a difference mean to you? Additionally, what does this mean for what types or roles you would like to work in?
What strengths and unique skills do I bring?
- Think about what you want to contribute, as well as what you find rewarding. Coupled with this, consider what you offer as an employee – this could be diverse experience and knowledge, specialist skills, or strong value set and passion.
- Take the VIA Strengths Survey (Values in Action Inventory of Strengths). Considering the results of your character strengths can help you gain clarity about your unique strengths and what you bring to the workplace above your job description.
- Consider your preferred skills, these are skills you enjoy using and that you are strong in – these energise you. When you are using them, you easily get in the state of ‘flow’, where time moves quickly and you are completely engaged in the task at hand. Sometimes we are strong at something and get asked to do tasks around that, but we don’t enjoy them – they are draining, not energising. Your ideal role utilises your preferred skills and reduces the use of skills that you don’t enjoy.
What type of role do I want to do next – or what type of organisation do I want to work for?
- Envisage the type of environment you want to work in. This could be anything from the leadership/management style you would like to work with to the overall culture of the workplace. It is important to have a good idea of this ideal environment, as a good fit will likely mean you are able to bring your whole self to your work.
- Think about what it was that you most enjoyed about your previous role. You should also think about what you liked the least. This will help you focus on what you are looking for in a new role.
- Reflect what your values are, and what they potentially mean to your future decisions. For example, if family is your number one value, flexible working in a new role may be very important to you.
If you have an idea of your why and what you can potentially bring to a new role, it will open your thinking and widen your possibilities, so you can start focusing on the ‘how’.
Asking these simple questions to yourself are small steps but can help build momentum and keep you on track to ensure that your next role is going to be a good choice for your career progression.
Casey is a warm and engaging career and leadership coach with strong experience empowering clients to realise a career that works for them, fulfil their potential and overcome limiting beliefs which are getting in the way. Casey has a passion for helping clients achieve a career where they feel engaged and fulfilled and are empowered to be their whole authentic selves in work and life.
Casey’s key value drivers are making a difference, equity and family. Her coaching, consulting and leadership experience includes working with individuals and organisations within the financial services, information technology, tourism, higher education and government sectors.
Casey is a member of the International Coaching Federation and a Certified Organisational Coach (Institute of Executive Coaching and Leadership).