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How to Avoid Taking the Wrong Career Risks

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When making career decisions, risk is inevitable. And to be successful in a job search, you have to be willing to take some career risks. Especially during a tough job market like the one we’re in right now.

For the past four weeks, I’ve shared some unique, out-of-the-box job search strategies. Not all strategies will work for every job seeker or every situation. But, they provide examples of calculated risks you may want to consider so you can stand out above the tight competition, and therefore increase your chances of landing a job.

How to take calculated career risks

How do you take calculated risks in your job search and your career?

It all starts with knowing your goals, your personal mission, and the strengths and skills you’ve been gifted to help serve others.

These factors should be the foundation of your job search, and all your career decisions. If you don’t know these things, you’re taking a dangerous risk.

For example, if you have more than one job offer to choose from and you haven’t taken the time to determine your personal mission, you may make a choice based on superficial things.

I see so many people choosing a job offer based solely on how much it pays. They think they’re making a good, financially risk-free decision. But soon they find themselves in a soul-sucking job.

They realize, by only taking financial risk into consideration, they risked so much more. They risked their peace, their sanity, and even their family.

A year or two later, they’re looking for a new job again.

Doing the foundational work

The foundational work needs to be done before you’re faced with multiple job offers. This foundational work includes clarifying your goals, solidifying your personal mission and vision, and knowing how to best use your skills to serve others.

It’s a process, and it takes time and commitment.

Just yesterday I read a quote that says,

“Most people do not deliberately seek to build on a false or inferior foundation; instead, they just don’t think about their life’s purpose.”

Don’t be one of those people!

Having a foundation already in place will help you know what you should measure your decisions against. This way, you’ll take calculated risks, and make sound career decisions.

Map out your goals

To get started on this necessary foundational work, first find some time and a quiet place to map out your goals.

Using paNASH’s 8-Step Goal-Achievement Plan can guide you through this process. It’s free when you subscribe to the paNASH newsletter.

Solidify your purpose and mission

Next, use paNASH’s Personal Branding program, in conjunction with the 8-Step Goal-Achievement Plan, to help you solidify your purpose and mission. This program will also help you determine your skills and who they best serve.

The Personal Branding program is available in a variety of forms:

The insights gleaned from this program give you leverage when determining which jobs to apply for and which calculated risks to take. This saves you time in your job search. Also, it helps you make the wisest career decisions when faced with multiple job offers.

Taking no career risks is a huge risk!

One thing to bear in mind. Your career cannot, nor should not, be confined or reduced to one particular model or program. Hence the suggestions for out-of-the-box job search strategies and one-on-one career coaching.

But often, models and programs, such as the ones listed above, give you a starting point to gain clarity to your unique situation, along with a foundation to build upon when different situations arise in your career.

I always recommend you use discernment, and consideration of more than just financial gains, when taking calculated risks in your career. But also understand, taking no risk at all in your career, is taking a huge risk. So start building your foundation today!

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