Pivoting is part of everyone’s everyday life. Either physically or mentally, people are transitioning constantly.
For every macro-pivot, which are personal and professional transitions, there are phases that people navigate through.
Pivoting in your career is a strategic transformation involving a structured progression through distinct phases, each bearing unique challenges and opportunities. Whether you’re contemplating a change in your role, industry, or even an entirely new professional direction, a well-organized understanding of these stages is crucial to navigating this process effectively.
Phase One: Change Occurs
A pivot always starts with a change. Either you want to make a change, or you’re forced to make a change. This phase is the starting line. It doesn’t matter the type of shift; whether you planned it or not, it can be overwhelming, stressful and daunting. What you do with the situation matters, how you compose yourself and deal with the stress.
During phase one, take inventory of your inner dialogue. For example, are you beating yourself up for what happened, for what got you there, putting yourself down? Or are you kind to yourself and practicing patience? Self-talk is the ignition to the change. For the pivot to be successful, it’s essential to keep positive thoughts and mindset; this will assist in mapping out the course of the transition.
To have a successful transition during phase one, identify what has happened, the best parts of your past that will support your next venture or position and create a strategy to move forward. Viewing the change as a stepping stone to leveling up will make the transition more seamless. Get excited. The more enthusiastic you are, the more you convince your brain to believe everything will be ok.
Phase Two: Strategize
Approach your career as a business venture. Adopting a business-like approach to career planning involves strategic thinking. Pivoting aligns you with a unique position; it’s your chance to choose what role, company or industry you want to immerse yourself in.
When considering which new career path to take, self-assessment is vital. Don’t overlook investing in your future. Your new direction may require you to take additional courses and develop a new skill.
Consider the following as part of your strategy:
- Develop a personal brand.
- Participate in networking events.
- Connect with influencers and cultivate a strong online presence.
- Seek feedback from mentors, industry professionals, and peers; use feedback to refine your approach and enhance performance.
- Establish key performance indicators (KPIs) for your career development, and regularly assess your progress against these metrics.
Consistently review and adjust your strategy to ensure it remains aligned with your goals and the evolving dynamics of the professional landscape.
Phase Three: Ask For Help
Many people are reluctant to have to ask someone for assistance. When you’re this far along in the process of pivoting, having this mentality will hinder your success.
Asking for and receiving support is a natural part of pivoting. It’s the only way you’ll keep your momentum. It’s not just about seeking advice or help; it’s knowing the right time to ask. If you ask prematurely, it’s grounds for a severed relationship. If you ask for help but aren’t specific about what you need, how can anyone help you? The more specific the ask, the more precise the results. Wait until you know exactly where you need the assistance to get you to the next level.
Phase Four: Trust In The Process
Every pivot has a point when you feel totally in control and the future looks bright. You no longer are questioning why you started this journey in the first place. You focused on your strategy and continued to work through the manageable goals that ultimately assisted in accomplishing the larger goal.
In this phase, remaining positive is easy. Taking time to reflect on how far you’ve come makes you more motivated. Here, you should be proud of yourself and all you’ve accomplished.
Remember, facing challenges during the pivot journey takes a quick mindset shift to set you back on the right course.
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