I had conversation yesterday with someone who recently lost their job unexpectedly. Even after many years of much documented success, accolades, and upward movement, the theory was because they had accumulated too much pay/benefits over the years, it made it more cost-effective for the company to lay off and start again.
The reality is… Corporate doesn’t owe us anything. It is a for-profit entity with NO obligation to those who sacrifice themselves, their life, their family, and so much for the entity’s success. It’s not anything to get upset about, but rather face that reality and be INTENTIONAL about your own success, preparation, growth, and advancement. This person with whom I was chatting, expressed how they poured everything into their company’s success, neglecting their own development over the years. I’m writing this to implore you to NOT fall into that trap.
Instead, be intentional about where you want be, where you need to grow, looking objectively at yourself, and a plan how to move toward that. Do NOT expect Corporate to fund those activities, but more often than not, companies don’t really invest into their people anymore. There are, of course, exceptions, and there are some ‘nominal’ development activities, but there is NO loyalty of a Corporate for-profit entity to invest in YOU for YOUR success. If you’re serious about your success, then be serious about how to make that investment into YOU as a continual professional activity.
It’s totally worth it, and when you get to that unexpected place where you need it, you’ll be prepared because you were intentional. These are one of those things that you can’t go out and do real quick when you need it, so always be in the process of pursuing it.
Some neglected areas of growth/development I see so prevalent in the workplace:
- Communication – how to be effective in your dealings with ALL types of people
- Influence – how to get people to do what you want/need them to do
- Leadership – how to encourage people to do exactly what you need them to do without being dictating and forcing it
- Perspective – how to see things from other people’s points of view and priority so you can adapt your communication to it