Make a Significant Professional Leap Forward This Year
Announcing a career management program designed to help you enhance your professional reputation, finally get real clarity on your market value, build a formidable network, brand yourself appropriately, accelerate your Career and set yourself up for the future.
Michel Gerber in his famous entrepreneurship book, E-Myth, distinguished between the problem of spending too much time and attention working in your business VS. investing in future success and sustainability by working on your business.
Just like a small business, your career needs to be worked “on” and not just “in.”
The career management program is designed to do just that; take care of the business of you. Intentionally.
What happens when you start working ON your career?
- You move from a reactive state to designing your career path and your professional pursuits
- You move from confusion or fuzziness about your professional offering and place in the market to taking ownership of your unique professional value and professional journey
- You move from a haphazard to strategic approach in the building and managing of your personal brand and professional reputation
- You take an intentional approach to network development, referral generation and opportunity flow which means a more exciting and fulfilling trajectory
- And, you improve your ability to create your future, your next thing, whatever that might be
Which Leads to Four Benefits
Minimize the Downside / Mitigate Risk
By increasing your market skills, engaging in realistic situational analysis, and anticipating the traps, you will put yourself in a more solid position, become more resilient in the face of surprises and ensure you are on the right track.
Improve the Present
Too often, anxiety about the future or that nagging feeling takes away from our engagement in the present. Get working on the pillars and you will become more aware in an objective way of your current situation’s pros and cons.
Just like the small business entrepreneur, by working on your career, you can influence your trajectory, get better aim toward exciting opportunities and increase your overall market power.
Help Design Your Future
You are moving towards something. The question is whether it is designed or by default. Let’s do it on purpose.
These four benefits can result in greater earning power, more security, greater control, diminished anxiety, increased flow of opportunities, and the fulfillment of being in or moving towards work that truly suits you and is on purpose. And in the process, and not least, you will be connected and develop relationships with other members and with me.
In a structured, systematic way, we will tackle the above.
Who is the program for?
The program is designed for experienced professionals who can be described as executives, senior managers, managers, entrepreneurs or self-employed types, leaders and those up and coming and ambitious.
The shared characteristic is that you believe that who you are and what you do are closely linked, and that by leveraging your unique professional assets, you can create greater capability, you can generate greater opportunities to play a bigger (or different) game, and that your overall well-being is improved as a result.
With that in mind, I’m drawing from my years consulting to a wide range of successful clients, my experience building professional development programs for a global top 100 b-school and my early work as an executive search consulting in shaping an annual program to provide structure, accountability and network to help you make progress on your career and life goals.
Making progress across the Pillars
The Pillars of Your Career Development
The management and development of your career maps to the following quadrants and pillars. Based on my 20+ years experience in the field, I’ve created this proprietary model. This is the framework on which the program is structured.
The goal is to move you forward in an intentional way. To make tangible progress in the next 12 months. Your goals will be unique to you and the pillars you focus on will depend on your situation. You may need to focus first on strengthening your foundation. You may want want to build an exciting vision for your future. Or set yourself up for advancement or towards more fulfilling work. , a stronger trajectory, the change you’ve been desiring, greater opportunity flow, more confidence and less anxiety, and greater market power.
The foundation of a well-managed, healthy career is self-awareness. Understanding your professional assets. Figuring out your natural target markets - where you fit, what you like doing and your natural environment / audience. Resolving some of the big career questions.
From understanding yourself to portraying your professional identity to the world (or at least your slice of it), the external zone is about you out and about in the market. Your brand (yes, you have some sort of brand), your presence, your network, your reputation. All of this should be managed and can be leveraged.
The present is about managing well. And that includes your performance, managing your professional journey (for example, making sound decisions about which projects to take), and being keenly aware of the opportunities and threats in your world.
If Managing is about optimizing the present, the Future Zone is about an intentional approach to your professional future. Not reactive. Not victim. Rather, doing your best to put vision and action into a future plan.
Capability Building Pillar
Your ability to directly influence your professional future has a lot to do with your capabilities. I differentiate between your professional skills (and expertise etc) - the things that you get hired to do. And market skills, the set of skills required to navigate the marketplace. Your capability is also enhanced by your earned market power.
What you focus on and what’s important to you, of course is up to you. The framework, and sub-frameworks, help bring awareness and attention to the different pillars. The state and season of your career / life journey will influence what is more and less relevant to you this year. You may, for example, need to focus on your internal search and clarity before you can tackle future design and planning.
Here's how the program rolls out
Here's what you'll work on.
Assess & Measure
The program starts with a top-level assessment of your current state across the key pillars. The goal is to understand your strengths and weaknesses relative to the pillars, flag potential risks, identify low hanging fruit, and identify appropriate priorities against where you are in your career lifecycle.
Opportunity / Threat Awareness
We also flag if your next 12 months has a threat (pending sale of your company, new boss, market instability…) or opportunity (predicted opening internally, goal to make a move, or your identified next step goal that you’re working towards…). This may or may not influence your focus areas, depending on factors like your market readiness.
You will identify 2–3 areas of focus for the year. These will be pillars, or some aspect of a pillar that we’ve identified as worthy of your attention. A focus area means a commitment to do some work to achieve a goal. I will help you by making a recommendation. They might involve:
- Direction: Develop greater clarity around what’s next. Dream big.
- Self-Assessment: Develop greater clarity around the dimensions of your unique professional offering and possibilities therein
- Market Skills: How market ready are you? Assess and identify skill and knowledge areas you need to close
- Personal Branding: How do you stand out currently? What do people think about you? Do the work to find out. What areas do you need to shore-up, align and improve?
- Reputation Management: Assess and take action to build your market reputation.
- Network Development: To what extent do you have the key relationships in your space? Are the gatekeepers aware of you? Map your market and develop your network.
I will serve up 8–9 themes throughout the year. The themes will be pillar-based and be comprised of a combination of topic, materials/content for learning, possible reflection or discussion items for the group, and possible action items.
The goal of the themes will be to make important progress on some dimension of the business of you. (Examples: LinkedIn profile upgrade month, map your industry’s eco-system, strengths clarification, top 20 relationship development…) How much time and attention you put into each will be up to you.
Doing the Reps
We will identify ongoing activities that you feel are important to you. If important, an accountability structure can be set-up to remind you. (Examples: Scheduling proactive coffee/lunch meetings, touching base with your key relationships, posting / updating / enhancing your LinkedIn presence…)
In your 12th month in the program, how did you do? Where did you make progress? What’s next and what’s the next level?
With customized feedback and year-planning with Ian Christie
Theme calls and/or focus days
Opportunity/Threat analysis. Focus areas. Visioning your future. Improving your scores across the pillars.
Reminders, Action Items, Accountability
Online learning modules
Your professional value, Marketing Gap, LinkedIn, interviewing, resume development and more
Level 2: 6 x 1-1 Coaching Meetings with Ian Christie
Ideate. Problem solve. Course correct. Get expert feedback.
12 Months & Beyond
- Take back control over your career trajectory
- Replace that nagging feeling of not being sure of what to do with action plans
- Approach your career more strategically from core principles
- Rest easier knowing that you're proactively addressing the threats and opportunities you've identified
- Gain the confidence and clarity that comes from better understanding your unique offering
- Take a systematic approach to building your network and reputation
- Put thought into what your professional future could look like and create a plan
- Identify and improve core market skills
What's at stake?
- Your current and future earning power
- Your long term career stability
- The achievement of your vision and goals
- Your overall well-being that comes from having professional fulfillment
- The calmness that comes from being more in control over your destiny
Charter Member Pricing
The Career Growth Program is launching March 2017. For a limited time, you can get special pricing with locked-in lifetime pricing, as a charter member.
Frequently Asked Questions
What should I expect when I register?
You'll receive a welcome email, followed by a series of action items. Program material drips out over time. We'll start with assessing across the pillars, doing threat/opportunity analysis and then setting key focus areas. Each step takes time. There will be a section on the website, usually with downloadable homework which you can upload to the private Dropbox folder we set up for you.
Is this program for people who want to change jobs or careers?
No, and yes. The program is designed without any assumption about making a career move. You could be working in a firm or self-employed with the idea that you never intend to look for a job and still benefit from this program. This is not a job search or career change program.
Having said that, the program helps you develop a greater awareness of your strengths and builds market skills that you could leverage for a stronger career move. The program is about building your capacity. Which includes setting yourself up for a stronger, future career move and part of the intention of the program is to make you more marketable and generate more opportunities for you.
Could the program be used within a company / organization?
Absolutely. It would be ideal if your organization approaches career development in an open way.
How long is the program?
Good question. It is structured as an annual program, 12-months based on the time you entered the program. There are activities that are beginning of the "year" focused and end of the "year" focused.
At the same time, with a career development focus, the program isn't designed with a specific end in mind. The development and management of your career is an ongoing thing, requiring attention, shifts of strategy, development of skills, etc. There's only so much that can be accomplished in one year and the idea is that you will continue to renew the program as you make progress along the areas of progress that are important to you. There are no pre-commitments to this of course.
Who is the program for?
The program is designed for professionals who can be described as executives, senior managers, entrepreneurs or self-employed types, leaders and those up and coming and ambitious. You have a shared value of seeing the benefit of taking care of things like reputation and brand. Shared interests on working on your career, rather than just in. You’d like to shape your future rather than settle. You’d like to engage in reflection and discussion as well as action. You see the benefit of the long haul.
Who shouldn't sign-up?
If you truly cannot afford the financial investment in the program, I suggest you wait until when it's less of a stretch. The program assumes that you're in some form of "white collar" role - as executive, management, senior individual contributor, or some form of self-employed professional.
What if during the year, I need a new resume, or consulting to lead me through a career change or transition? Does the program include that?
The program isn’t meant to be substitute for the deep dive or deliverable work. Other than the included onboarding 1-1 time and other meetings scheduled in for Level 2 and above, the program is delivered to the group at the same time. Each of the pillars will have learning content attached designed to help you take action and improve on your own. Beyond those resources, you can:
Add services to your program as needed
Or, the VIP level might the way to accomplish this, with all of these things included.
Pricing & Account Questions
Why do you have different levels? Which one should I pick?
From long experience with hundreds and hundreds of clients, I'm aware that there are different needs and learning styles. Some participants want a do-it-yourself approach. Others need or want the accountability, insights and advice from the support in Level 2, and others want more support and the opportunity to engage with peer groups.
Which you pick will be a reflection of your budget, and preferences.
Can I upgrade or downgrade program levels mid-year?
Yes. We'll adjust for your next billing cycle and you'll either gain access to features of the upgraded plan, or if a downgrade, lose access to those higher level features.
What is the refund policy?
A full refund is available for the first 30 days. As this is an annual program, there are no further refunds issued after the first 30 days.