Career Testing
Career Testing
Career Testing
CAREER DEVELOPMENT / NOV. 15, 2014
version 2, draft 2

How to Manage Your Career Similar to Managing an Investment Portfolio

People who have been investing periodically to build up their portfolios love to keep track of their investments and watch them grow. They keep planning, and make changes to the portfolio, selling stock, shares or bonds that have almost reached saturation point, as far as returns are concerned. They also look at new avenues of investment so that they can maintain a healthy mix-and-match in their portfolios.

When it comes to one’s career, applying the same principles and trying to attain the perfect balance would make complete sense. In the course of your career, you may have allowed yourself to be coaxed into a career path that was not your choice entirely. This could have been due to the immediate need being more pressing, leaving out little or no space for choice or selective picking.

Read on to find out how you can manage your career better just like managing an investment portfolio.

Don’t get carried away by fancy titles

Doing your homework before choosing an investment plan is a must, more so in the case of a long time investment plans. It goes without saying that you shouldn’t fall a prey to fancy investment ideas. A career choice is no different in this regard.   

A fancy title like ‘vice president’ or ‘director marketing’ alone need not mean that you have landed a great job. What’s more is you may even be offered a fat pay packet, but is this what you had planned for all along? One needs to look forward to going to his or her place of work with enthusiasm, and if your job does not draw you to your seat every day with the same passion, you are probably in the wrong job. Have you acquired new and enough skill sets while at your current job, and are you ready for any quick changes in career? These are the questions you need to ask yourself, and keep delving into self-analysis, along with a thorough review of your career periodically.

Is your career portfolio mixed and matched?

You may have taken up a particular job due to compelling reasons, including lack of suitable opportunities and pressing economic needs. However, you cannot allow yourself to be entrenched in something that does not give you satisfaction. It is like playing safe with your finance portfolio and settling for a fixed income that is secure, when compared to a more risky, though rewarding investment in speculative stocks. How about going out of the line and taking a calculated risk that would not just fetch better returns, but give a sense of satisfaction that is matchless? It is good to be on the lookout for more challenging career options, lest you miss a great opportunity, and then regret when it is too late.

Go for the best, or even something midway?

Just as not all investments in blue chip companies fetch the best returns, not all fancy jobs with the best of companies may be matching your expectations. Instead of getting caught in the grindstone and tagging along with the others, you need to stop and think if it is worth your while to take risks off and on in your career.

Eggs in different baskets, and multi-tasking or juggling functions

 

The cardinal rule with investments that will result in building a healthy portfolio is – ‘never put all your eggs in a single basket’. This way your risk is spread out, and the returns will be balanced, with less chances for incurring losses. Similarly, exposing yourself to new areas of learning, and diverse perspectives should really stand you in good stead in your long career path. Instead of being stuck in a stereotyped job that hardly gives you any chance to look at other alternatives, you need to be ready to experiment and explore. Work with different managers and gain an insight into their ways of handling similar situations.

In short, it is better to have an open mind when it comes to making decisions about one’s career. Just as enough thought and care go into building a diverse financial portfolio, one needs to remain open to exploring new career avenues, without having a fixed mindset. Although there is an element of risk in such endeavors, one will certainly have the satisfaction of having experimented and attempted to step away from the crowd by thinking differently.

 

Image Credit: deloitte, expertbeacon

 

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