So you think you want growth?
I believe it's one of the most essential components of a happy, healthy employee.
When we're growing, we feel alive, engaged and valued. When we aren't, we feel disengaged, shut down, abandoned.
But growth doesn't always just happen (as if by magic!). It requires opportunity. challenge. A new project. A different role. The next level.
Often we fall into one of two camps:
We believe that someone is going to just know we are ready for more and give it to us. We do our work like good little bees and wait for someone to acknowledge our amazingness and reward us with more responsibility & better projects. It's great when this happens (signs of a good manager!!) but often we're waiting longer than we need to for the person above us to catch on.
Or... we think we have to go out and get it ourselves.
We go into control mode. We strive to "create the opportunity." We look for ways to prove to the boss we deserve it. We try to weasel our way onto projects, and end up feeling dejected when we're half-included. We work harder, harder harder... and in doing so we jump straight onto the hamster wheel of frustration, comparison and stuckness.
If we're not getting it, it's because we aren't good enough or our boss doesn't value us enough. WE have to do more!!!
In reality, there is a faster, easier way - one where you can step into the drivers' seat while allowing for growth to come your way.
This is my three step process for getting the growth you need:
1. Get clear.
Growth for growth's sake is great, but usually, there is much more behind that that we should get clear on ourselves before involving others. I recommend answering these prompts in writing, or just spending 10 minutes journaling for clarity.
Here are some things to ask yourself in this part of the process:
what do I want more of? less of?
what or who am i envious of today? why?
what does growth mean to me? maybe it's recognition, learning, engagement, rewards, challenge. maybe it's all of these things, or none of them.
why do I want to grow?
what will growth feel like when I have it?
The point here is to understand more of the what and the why than the how. The more open we can be to whatever form the wanting will take in the end, the better.
2. ID with the right folks to talk to
Make a list of the people who could help you get where you want to go.
Your boss should be at the top of this list - unless you're looking for something completely outside of your current org. He or she can put us on the 'fast track,' show us what we need to go to get there, and unlock opportunities that we might not see on our own.
Next, think about other people in your organization who could help you take on a new project or forge a new path.
Finally, think outside of your org to mentors, peers, etc.
Start at the top of the list and work your way down, as needed.
3. Ask for help
Share directly and honestly with your people -- let them in on what you're looking for and why (per your writing exercise above).
The next part is the most important part: make the ask for help! You need to be explicit here - how can this person help you?
Here are a few thoughts:
Ask where to start: Are there projects you can take on? Skills you need to learn or hone? Conversations to have or people to meet? Goals to complete?
Ask what the future could look like: what is available to you? what can you create? where might your skill set be an asset?
If this person has a direct hand in your career growth, ask for a timeline or understanding of the process moving forward.
Finally, ask for help from your guides - this could come in the form of family, friends, God, spirit guides, the universe, angels, your grandma who has passed, a mentor, etc. Ask them to hear your wanting and guide you towards that. Surrender your need to control the outcome and trust that your wanting will lead you to what is of the highest good, for you and for all.
4. Check-in on progress
Make a point to check in every two weeks or so (depending upon who you are working with) to ensure progress is being made. And set a goal for yourself of when you would like to see a transition through by, if appropriate.
I'd love to hear from you - are you ready for more? what are you ready to ask for? how are you going to get it?