Don't like your job, define one you like

I love the company where I work. The people are great, the benefits and salary are more than fair, and the company is doing well. My problem is that I’m tired of my current business analysis role and there doesn’t seem to be any jobs opening internally that are appropriate for me. What do I do?

They say that timing is everything. As a case in point, I began writing this answer while sitting in a coffee shop waiting to meet a fellow professional speaker. When he arrived, he asked me what I was working on. I showed him the above question I had received from a reader and just by chance, he recently spoke on this topic. He said the following:

When you look only at your skills you become a commodity and/or a tool. When you focus on results, you become the expert that is called upon to solve existing problems. So look for other problems at your company where you can bring quality results. Your ability to solve these types of problems may be the basis for your next job at the company. My friend’s name is Stephen Balzac. He can be found at www.7stepsahead.com.

As additional food for thought, I would like to ask you a few questions.

  • What do you like to do?
  • What are the attributes of your ideal job?
  • What are you currently qualified to do?
  • With reasonable additional training, what would you be qualified to do?
  • What potential job roles exist at your company that interest you and match your current or future skill set?

The combined answer to these questions can help provide you with the insights needed to map out your short term and long term job possibilities. It can also help you find and fill holes in your resume that are currently holding you back. It may also help provide you with the clarity needed to move you toward your ultimate professional aspirations.

With this knowledge in mind, try to combine it with Steve’s thoughts on looking within your company for places where your skills can create positive measurable results.

When looking for a new position, begin by looking within your current department. You may find that with a little thought and creativity, the opportunity you are looking for may exist within your current department. You may be able to grow your existing role in a way that helps your company and provides you with the professional growth you are seeking.

Trying to define your own job is not as farfetched as you may believe. I know people who have done it successfully. The trick to make it happen is to do the following:

  • Do a great job in your current role so your manager and others will feel positive about you personally and in the results you produce.
  • Try to be a problem solver by nature. This will help make you the go-to person for your manager and others when problems arise.
  • Be watchful for opportunities to improve internal department/company processes and work to improve them, when within your authority to do so.
  • Be alert for opportunities to expand your existing role into areas that are good for the company, can help you grow professionally, are within your skill set, and are of interest to you.

Who knows, with vigilance, hard work, and a little bit of luck, your next job may be one of your design and making.

If you have any questions about your career in IT, please email me at eric@ManagerMechanics.com or find me on Twitter at @EricPBloom.

Until next time, work hard, work smart, and continue to grow.

Read more of Eric Bloom's Your IT Career blog and follow the latest IT news at ITworld. Follow Eric on Twitter at @EricPBloom. For the latest IT news, analysis and how-tos, follow ITworld on Twitter and Facebook.

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