Sunday, 4 December 2016

Follow your heart

Day 5 (Monday 5th December 2016)

9th September 2016 (the date is the 68th anniversary of 
the founding of North Korea). The other 4 were 6th January 2016,
12th Feb 2013, 25th May 2009 and 9th October 2006.

I was both amazed and delighted when this post dropped into my inbox. I have known Michael Moran for years, but had no idea that he was a follower or fan of the Advent Blogs series.  Michael is the Chief Executive and Founder of 10Eighty - the specialist organisation that works with organisations to ensure that they achieve the best outcomes in relation to their people (80% of people in companies are the "bedrock" and results can be achieved by increasing their engagement, the remaining 20% can be split into two groups of 10 - the first are the talented star performers that any business needs to identify, attract, and retain the final 10% are in the process of leaving (for a multitude of reasons) - Michael and his team can help with each group, hence the corporate name). 

Michael cut his teeth in the National Health, working with unions and in "personnel" (as it was then) within the Health Service, before moving into The City in time for Big Bang. Michael developed his career within leading brokers and commodity specialists, focusing on organisational effectiveness and strategy. He ceased being an operations manager to establish and lead Penna's Financial Services arm. Michael believes in self-development and continuous learning. Whilst at Penna he found time to study, achieving an MBA from Warwick - when chatting with him it is hard not to be inspired by his quick wit and perceptive questioning). In the early Noughties Michael left to have greater autonomy in running a business, joining Fairplace. Throughout his career he has specialised in working with and supporting people. Michael is active on social Media, you can follow him on Twitter, his handle is @mdmoran10eighty.

As the title of his post perhaps suggests, his piece is full of hope and inspiration - simple, sage advice (just what Michael has provided for me at times, over the years, when we've met up for a chat).


Follow your heart 

This piece was inspired by the news that after years of giving careers advice to readers of the Financial Times, the award-winning columnist Lucy Kellaway is changing career.

Kellaway believes that changing careers leads to richer lives, and that at the age of 57 she is excited by the challenge. Kellaway admits that it won’t be an option for those who can’t afford the smaller pay packet of a teacher’s starting salary but thinks there is a “demographic sweet spot” of those whose children have left home and who avoided the worst of the housing market.

Most of us are likely to be working into our sixties and seventies and career change may be a welcome option for many. Take a gap year, retrain, do an MBA, change direction. 

You can reinvent yourself or start afresh. Do you want to be a gallery owner, a landscape gardener, a football coach, a hypnotherapist?

Silvana de Soissons left a role in The City to become initially a food writer and cookery
teacher, before focusing on artisan food (she started her first food blog, The Foodie Bugle,
which, the following year, went on to win the Guild of Food Writers Media Award). In addition to The Foodie Bugle,
she now has a shop in Bath selling fresh local produce and beautiful but strictly useful objects for the house

Live your values

Many people fall into a career that suits but doesn’t inspire them. You don’t have to stay there forever, though. Don’t be constrained by goals you set in the past - there are so many ways to find a perfect career! Your story is unique and the possibilities are endless.

I advocate that over the holiday you spend some time on a rigorous self-evaluation and don’t compromise your values or stifle your ambition. Apply some mindfulness to your career plan and follow your intuition. You need to live by your values and convictions and if you can work with others who share your passion that helps. You have to be the change you want, trust yourself and do whatever it takes to make a difference and put your ideas about a fulfilling and sustainable career into practice.

It sounds simple but we live and work in a complex world and sometimes we have to negotiate and compromise but nobody is perfect and you don’t have all the answers but keep asking questions and chasing your dream.

Career activism

Becoming a successful career activist is about opening your mind to the possibilities around you. My advice:

  • It's not a privilege to have a job you love, it is what you deserve.
  • Making changes may be hard but you have the power to plan your life and change it.
  • Use your network, connect with those who inspire you.
  • Cultivate a focus on your career that will allow you to develop and thrive.
  • Make a commitment to continuous self-improvement.
  • Be ready and be flexible and courageous in considering your options, you have a wealth of experience, knowledge and perspectives, be creative about how you apply them.

If you think you need to make changes, next year, go for it!


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