Creating a Work Legacy

If you are like a lot of people, you may have had to take a job that was not necessarily on your career path during this recession to stay afloat and pay the bills. Now that the job picture is improving, you may be restless and be thinking about moving on to a new job. This may feel great if there is a possibility of moving towards a new job that will propel you along your chosen career path. There are some helpful things you can do while you are moving towards your next job.

Think about what you will leave behind at this job. Will it be a reputation for developing good rapport with customers? Or developing a better survey to measure customer satisfaction? Maybe you were the go-to person for all things computer. This is your work legacy, and you’ve been working on it since Day 1 at this job. As you think about moving on, step back and assess your work legacy. Are you where you want to be in this specific job, even if it wasn’t your dream job? If you are unhappy right now, you may have time to change things, as it may take you some time to move on to that next job. So what will you change now? Here are a few things to concentrate on:

1) Learn as many new skills as you can. If you feel like you are doing the job of two people, this one is probably a done deal. A broad range of skills makes you more marketable and can come in handy in any position. For example, I was laughing with a friend at a holiday party about our ability to project 16mm films and to fix film sprocket damage. It came in handy for him when his company was showing films at a work retreat.

2) Contribute as much as you can to your job. Don’t just “phone” your performance in. It is easier to leave a job when you know you did your best and supervisors were happy with your work.

3) Create healthy relationships with colleagues. This can be difficult to do when people are working hard in fear of losing their jobs. However, you can make a big difference by offering to help when you can and by creating a supportive atmosphere. Make work friends, and take time to blow off steam and talk about things other than work.

4) Ask for help when you need it. It speeds up skill acquisition, helps you to contribute within your company and may introduce you to new people in the process.

Knowing that you’ve created a good work legacy can give you satisfaction, even if this last job did not take you exactly where you expected to go in your career.

One Response

  1. […] I wrote in Creating a Work Legacy, sometimes you have to forgo your dream job for one that will pay the bills right now. Or perhaps […]

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