Whether you’re in an established role, considering pivoting your skills and experience, are job-hunting and need to ace interviews, or are a change consultant who has to think on their feet when potential clients come to you with problems to solve, credibility is king.
Without adequate self-belief you are unlikely to pursue the really big, interesting, challenging change projects and opportunities - and we need innovators like you to do exactly that.
A lack of self-belief often shows up in our fears. Maybe you’re fearful there are no opportunities right now. This is simply untrue. Look around and see the possibility for change is everywhere. Literally every company wants to change and if they're not moving towards that change, it's because they don't think they can. But they can move into action with just one person (you!) in their network saying, “We can do this and I can help.” Career growth isn’t about having all the answers, it’s about knowing that if you are authentic, respectful and transparent, you will be able to deliver. If you have found a way in the past, you will find a way now.
The lack of self-belief could show up in a fear of failure if you decide to pivot your skills and experience to work in change and transformation (a huge growth sector now). Growing your career isn’t about knowing you can do something because you've done it before. It’s about doing more and doing differently. Recognise that the first time you do something outside your comfort zone, fear and self-doubt is to be expected. Self-belief doesn't equal not being scared. This kind of fear keeps you on the right side of the arrogance line and always questioning how you can be better - and that’s a good thing.
Not having a set of established tools and methodologies harms your career because big problems don’t tend to come with advance warning - and you need to be prepared for how you would solve them.
When you’re called into a meeting or get a phone call asking if you can help solve a big problem, what people really want is a yes or no answer. People with the power to promote or hire you are looking for you to know at least a couple of tools and methodologies that could work to solve it.
Decision-makers don’t need you to come back to them in a couple of weeks once you’ve done some research and written up potential methodologies. Do that and you go to the bottom of their list. Even if the proposal you go back with is amazing, that first impression was not a credible one.
You build credibility by showing you have knowledge at your fingertips. Actually all you're doing is implementing your established tools and methodologies onto their problem. But there is a significant difference between that and the person who has to re-create their tools and methodologies for every single client or employer they work with.
Having a suite of possible tools and methodology at your disposal gives you both confidence and credibility. Of course no tool or methodology will fit every situation, but your unique professional genius is to see the problem and pick those you know are likely to solve it.
It’s not enough to have a network. If your career isn’t going the way you want it to, the problem is not having a supportive and engaged network.
If you have a network with whom you regularly butt heads and compete for who can tell the most amazing story about your career, it’s unlikely they’ll be the same people who help you out of problems when you fall into them.
Having a supportive and engaged network is like having a safety parachute; it enables you to take risks. If you've promised something you have little idea how to deliver, your network will catch you. They will co-create solutions with you because they want to help you out, but that requires you to be authentic and vulnerable with them.
A LinkedIn list is not a proxy for a network. Having a network is being able to pick up the phone or write an email to people who know, like and trust you, and are therefore happy to help. Your network could be composed of mentors, your trusted inner circle, people you’ve worked closely with in the past and/or people you’ve been on a course with.
Without the safety of a supportive network, you stay inside your comfort zone and are unlikely to go after the big, scary change projects or huge business problems available to solve.
With a brilliant network, you are confident that even if you don't know exactly how to solve your industry’s problems, someone in your network will.
Which of these 3 credibility blockers are you struggling with?
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Oakwood is a Transformational Change Consultancy that works with mid-sized + companies, local authorities and individuals who are on a mission to create successful, sustainable and self-sufficient change. With our proprietary, comprehensive and proven 5i Framework and our collection of tools and processes, we have a higher record than most at creating the result you desire, without it being all about us … because your success isn’t about us, we’re here to support, guide and empower the change YOU make.
With our unique Matrix Method we can see things that others can’t, no matter how complicated the problem, it can be analysed and simplified into a system you will understand, and our enviable network of experts means that no problem is too big or too difficult to find a solution for.
Our experience spans private, public, local and global which means we understand the inner workings of change in each environment, without losing the feeling of real relationships - we truly have a global reach with a local feel. www.oakwoodmanagementconsulting.com
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