5 EPIC CAREER LESSONS
Last year I was on a journey of love and in that year our dear Lord Jesus did a complete restructuring of my attitudes, beliefs and misses on love and relationships, transforming me. Well, when the year came to an end I was relieved not knowing I was about to be thrown into another long journey.
When this year begun, I had only one thought in mind, to get a job and be a great legal professional.
As usual I thought I was ready for this new journey but little did I know I was about to be schooled yet again on the right attitudes, values, goals and focuses I should have as a young professional in the legal profession.
Before I begin sharing these lessons, let me ask, am I the only one who eats tears every day when they are on a tough journey? Just me? Oh ok, hahahahahahha. Let’s begin.
1.If you don’t stand for something you will fall for anything
I had to learn this the hard way which caused me a river of tears one Wednesday night. When you are new at work you will realize people give you all sorts of things to do as maybe you are new or seem too good or you are just new and they can take advantage of you before you come around. This is the case also in many areas of life.
Who are you in your profession?What do you stand for? What is it that you should specifically do? If you do not have an understanding of this from the get go, trust me you will fall for any task or thing you are given,even if it does not form part of your daily responsibilities or goals.
2.You need to learn to assert yourself
In other words this is simply learning how to say no to opportunities, work, ideas,activities or responsibilities that will not add value to your life or do not form part of your job description. Kindly read my previous post here Saying no to get more insight on this.
3. Having a clear vision or dream of what you want
What are your visions and dream in your industry? Where do you want to be in 2,5,10 years? What do you want to be remembered for rather what legacy do you want to leave behind? What do you want to be your contribution in your industry or this life? What do you want?
This is a question that people do not answer simply.This is because they have not defined it themselves. We need to have clear defined visions and dreams.
Do you want a job that can only give you a salary at the end of the month and security?Or do you want a job that offers much more than just money? I remember when I was confronted with this question I had one desire ‘MORE’.I remember telling God and my twin sister, ‘I SIMPLY WANT MORE,THAT’S ALL’.
See for me, I am not ok with just enough, just okay, just sufficient to get by, because I want to be a market leader within my profession. This is not an easy fit and requires you to know exactly what you want and be ready to stand for it. Many have said I am too picky while others advised me to just take on any job.
I do not want to take any job but a job that will contribute to my career growth towards being a market leader not just an employee gaining a salary to just get by. I believe in the ability of my Father,who is God and know He can get me more and so I audaciously asked Him according to Matthew 7:7 for more.
This may not be your goal and this is ok. We all want different things, my point is you need to know exactly what you want so that you know when and what to say yes or no to.
Your vision and dreams guide you on making career decisions. This will mean sometimes saying no to a job that offers you good money but is wanting in offering you career growth.
4.Being faithful in the small things.
My twin sister once told me when she got to work the first goal she had was to be faithful at work in the small things even when no one was watching her. This saw her accept different challenges and opportunities at work from her employers not because she was miss-too-goody-shoes but because she saw it as a chance to grow.She resolved to work in all these tasks faithfully,no matter how small.
She continued to work as if the only eyes that were meant to see her were those of God. One could have thought she works too hard for nothing.I mean nobody cares or notices so why does she do it or bother. But you know what,the one who needs to notice was watching and when she got her promotion and salary increase without a fight or campaign she understood, how truly our Lord God rewards what you do in secret,publicly. So work faithfully in all the tasks assigned to you.
It is that extra mile even in the smallest of tasks that will set you apart and give you an edge over everybody else.Moreover if you cannot be faithful in the small tasks and assignments given to you how will you handle the bigger tasks of a C.E.O?Think about it.
5.Receiving criticism positively
I am one of those people who did not take criticism kindly. This is one of the things that God has been working on in me.
Criticism is quite useful as it allows us to see what is amiss and get to improve on it. As I write this I obviously take note that not all criticism is fruitful and you can always choose to ignore it.
Twice a week I volunteer to train prisoners at Industrial Area Remand Prison and Lang’ata Women’s Prison on their legal rights and guide them legally through their cases. In extreme cases, offer to take on pro bono cases. So when we were last at Industrial Area Remand Prison the other day, one of the questions that we got was “You people come here every week and I do not see how you help us”.
In a situation where I could have been utterly mortified and annoyed as I sacrifice to take a day to teach them freely, I was surprisingly calm. On that day I clearly heard his sincere concern.
Could it be that they had not understood our nature of engagement from the beginning? Could it be that we needed new or improved methods to teach them? Could it be that they needed an example or two to see the positive results of our interaction with them?
This I took to heart and purposed with the team to improve on the same. I do not just want to go there every week and teach. I desire that at the end of the day I rest assured that I made a positive contribution in their lives.
Criticism makes you better and allows you to see that which you had not seen. Being that there are two sides to anything, the next time you receive one choose to look at it from the positive side.
One may say one of the worst times in life which is a total waste of time is while they wait to get a job. This however for me is a lie, as I have grown and learned so much in this new journey that I am entirely grateful to God for taking me through this journey.It has sharpened and prepared me for what is to come. What has your waiting season taught you? God bless you all.
This post is specifically dedicated to all the young professionals who are waiting to begin their journey and all those who have just begun. We are the future and all our dreams as Lupita Nyong’o said,are valid. Let nobody rain on your parade.