You can use your job to get what you want.
You can use the job you have now to achieve any goal.
I know I keep repeating myself with that, but I don’t think I could ever say it enough. Way too many of us feel like work is just something to go to so we can pay our bills, and if we think of it that way it’ll always be something that seems to get in our way.
So just in case you need a reminder, there it is. And if this is the first time you’ve heard it, READ THIS to get a proper introduction to the concept of using your job.
And today I want to tell you how to do it. It’s a 12-Step process, and we’ll start with the summary:
Here’s how it breaks down:
STEP 1: Make A Plan
This is where you identify exactly what you want for your life, and then pick your job apart for every advantage and opportunity you can use for getting those things. You think about how it can develop you, what skills you can learn, the connections you can make, the things it could lead to. You think of every possibility, so you’ll never walk into work again without knowing exactly what it’s for and where it’s taking you. Then you think about how you might evolve your current position to make it work for you even more. The process is pretty involved, so you can get the details HERE.
STEP 2: Have Confidence at Work
This step comes with a bonus of giving you more confidence in general, but having it at work will be critical for getting the most out of it. You’ll need to believe in yourself and your abilities, and be able to trust yourself to make decisions. Having confidence will change everything for you, and that’s why it’s the very next step in this process of using your job. THIS POST will explain, and give you a list of simple habits you can start today to increase your confidence.
STEP 3: Develop Yourself with Your Job
This is where you’ll identify exactly who you need to become in order to reach your biggest goals. You’ll write down the knowledge and skills you’ll need, and the character traits you’ll need to develop. You’ll study those things on your own time, and you’ll practice them at work. READ THIS for details.
STEP 4: Be in Character at Work
This takes your practice of skills and attributes, and it puts it on steroids. During this step, you make yourself a work character. That character is YOU at your best, and you practicing the skills and attributes you need to have in order to achieve your goals. And every single second you’re at work, you stay in character. This one is easy to misunderstand, so READ THIS to learn what this IS and IS NOT, and exactly how to do it.
STEP 5: Learn Your Company’s Goals and How You Can Deliver
In this step, you learn exactly what your company’s strategic goals are, and you identify all the ways you can demonstrate that you understand those and can deliver them from your current position. THIS POST will explain.
STEP 6: Work Well with Your Coworkers
I love this one. This step by itself will give you so much happiness and fulfillment from your job. This is where you become certain things for your coworkers, and be those things for them every time you’re at work. This will bring kindness, friendliness, helpfulness, gratitude, and cooperation in - whether it was there before or not. READ THIS for more.
STEP 7: Work Well with Your Boss
In this step, you identify your boss’s goals for his/her position and how you can support those from yours; you identify your boss’s responsibilities and how you can help him/her to spend more time on priorities; you learn your boss’s communication style and tailor yours in conversations with him/her; you learn what your boss values in an employee so you can deliver; and you learn how your boss wants to be updated so you can comply. You also come up with ways to work better together and make things more efficient, and ways you can work with more independence. READ THIS to get the details.
STEP 8: Work Well with Customers
This step is the most challenging, in my opinion, but it’s also often where you can get the best practice with developing needed skills and character traits. During this process, you identify everything you can learn from your customers that will help you become who you need to be to reach your goals. You learn how to be certain things for them - no matter what else you have going on. And you become ultra-purposeful about staying in character - no matter who is in front of you and what buttons they’re pushing.
STEP 9: Increase Accuracy and Move On from Mistakes
This is where you set up systems and procedures for yourself to reduce mistakes and keep things from falling through the cracks. You’ll also purposefully take care of yourself and look after your own happiness so you can avoid a slump. And you’ll have a plan for what to do when mistakes happen, so you can move on with confidence and grace.
STEP 10: Communicate Clearly
This one will make you so valuable, and having the skill will be so valuable for you. Miscommunication is such a common problem, and in this step you’ll make sure you aren’t ever the cause. Since you’ll be doing this at work, you’ll make sure to do this whether you’re getting or receiving information/instructions, and you’ll know what to do when you’re on the receiving end of partial information.
STEP 11: Be Productive
Since work can sometimes become a trap of distraction and wasted time, you’ll learn how to put things in place that will help you to quickly identify priorities and complete those, know what to do with the extra stuff and give those a place, and give yourself some priceless time for getting absorbed in your work with no interruptions.
STEP 12: Understand and Support the Vitals
In this step you’ll identify the three most critical things your company needs to survive, and how you can support those from whatever position you’re in.
Mastering all twelve steps will change everything about your experience at work. You’ll be challenged by your work; fulfilled by it - no matter what your job description actually is. You’ll be happy there; cheerful when you go in. You’ll be working with your own secret purpose and mission, and it will give you energy, and excitement. You’ll shape a culture of kindness, cooperation, respect, understanding, and friendship - even if you’re the only one bringing those things in. You’ll become so valuable to your company, employer, boss, coworkers, clients - you’ll make so many priceless connections that could lead to opportunities you can’t even dream about yet. You’ll create advantages for yourself.
But these steps will also transform you. You’ll have developed priceless skills and attributes. You’ll have put habits in place that shaped your character. No matter how much you already were these things before, you’ll become more kind, more positive, more understanding, more courageous, more resilient, more able to problem-solve, more able to see opportunity, more able to see the good. You’ll become someone who can achieve anything you want.
It seems crazy that you could get all those things from a job, right? Especially if yours doesn’t seem like the “right” kind? But I’m telling you: no matter what yours is, or how much it pays, or how relevant (or not) it is to your degree or the industry you’d like to be in - it is the perfect place to use for your personal development and goal achievement.
And you don’t have to stay at your current one for any longer than you planned; just start this process there now, and then when you move on to the next job, start the process over in the next, and do it there, and the whole thing will be like a staircase that takes you to the life you want.
If you’re ready to get started, there’s a 90-Day Challenge that incorporates strategies from all twelve steps of this process, and gives you a gigantic leap ahead on your goals and progress at work. It’s in book form, and you can get it HERE in paperback or a Kindle version.