Do You Love What You Do?

The end of the year is a few weeks away. As things begin to wind down it's a good time to take stock of your career, reflecting on the year that's been and your goals for the year ahead. Take a moment to ask yourself these questions: Do I love what I do? Am I happy and fulfilled at work? Do I feel valued?

Here at Chorus Executive we're great believers in doing what you love. We love what we do, so we work closely with our candidates to help them find their dream job. A job where they feel ENGAGED, VALUED and have a sense of PURPOSE, can make work a great place to be. 

Loving what you do is ESSENTIAL. We spend 50% of our waking hours at work, if you aren’t happy there you won’t be happy away from the office. When you don't love your work, at least 75% of the time (nowhere is ever going to be 100% perfect) life is not fun. Finding happiness in your work will extend throughout the rest of your life, outside of the office.

Of course, there are always obstacles stopping us taking a leap, to find a role we love. Do these sound familiar? I don’t know what I am passionate about. I can’t afford to do what I’m passionate about, it doesn’t pay enough.  I will be able to pursue my passions when “I have enough money.” I’m scared to take such a big risk!  I don’t know how!

Don’t know what you’re passionate about? Use the Peeplmatch Skills and Passions Wizard to help you discover your passions. Too scared to take the risk or take a pay cut? Ask yourself what you would be willing to give up to be happy? A few extra meals at home, carpooling or delaying a trip overseas, are these things too much to change for happiness at work?

We are seeing a distinct move by our candidates this year. Increasingly our candidates are willing to take a 10 – 20% decrease in pay for work that they love.

After all, life is too short to not love what you do!

So, as 2016 ends ask yourself, “Do I love what I do?” 

If the answer is yes, FANTASTIC! What is it that you love about your job? Note your achievements over the last year and what you are most proud of. These are great things to add to your LinkedIn profile to share the love.

 If the answer is no, perhaps 2017 is the year to do something about it. Take the time to complete the Peeplmatch Wizard and our Dream Job Assessment Guide. These will help to identify the role that's right for you. Chorus Executive can also offer you Career Coaching, contact us for further information. 

What makes a good mentoring program?

It’s amazing how much the world has changed.  It used to be that learning through mentorship was so common that we barely noticed it was happening.  It’s only by comparing how we now live, communicate and work, that it becomes apparent how much we previously relied on mentors. 

When I was growing up, I learned how to cook from my mum.  I learned how to change a flat tyre from my dad.  I had teachers at school and university who guided me towards my career.  I had managers in my early career that shaped me and primed me for future challenges and endeavours.  That was the way it worked back then.   Now however, things are different.

Nowadays, people are more likely to learn how to cook from a Jamie Oliver book.  They are more likely to teach themselves how to change a flat tyre from YouTube.  Google is the modern day repository of knowledge, cutting out any need to go directly to your community (whether that is family, friends, colleagues or leaders) for the answers.

And so it follows that while people nowadays are more self-sufficient than ever, the concept of mentorship, particularly in business, has been lost along the way.  This is not an indictment of businesses; this is just a sign of the times.  With the average tenure of employment decreasing and job hopping or career changes more prevalent, people are simply not around long enough in one business to receive mentorship naturally.  Potential mentors are not around long enough in one business to offer their expertise and knowledge.

Those that are driven and smart about their career strategy will actively seek out a mentor; however it can be a difficult task to find the most appropriate person.  This is where having a formalised mentoring program can really help.

Of all the decisions made in business, the decision to offer employees a formalised mentoring program will be one where there can be no negative impact.  That’s a pretty big statement to make but think about it:

  • Every employee that undergoes mentorship will learn, grow and become a more productive worker. 
  • Mentees gain insight beyond their own education and experience and can be primed for leadership.  Those already in a leadership role can hone and improve their leadership skills.
  • Studies have demonstrated that employers stand to increase their rate of employee retention by 35%.
  • Retention of staff keeps valuable knowledge and IP secure in the business.
  • By offering mentorship, businesses improve their branding as employers of choice.
  • Employers will see a drastic improvement in ideas, performance, innovation and productivity – all positively effecting the bottom line.

Essentially, it is a win-win for both mentees and employers.

But what makes a good mentoring program?

Firstly, like any program or strategy implemented in a business, it is imperative to understand the objectives.  

  • What is the business trying to achieve?
  • What is the mentee trying to achieve?
  • How do these two objectives align?

Secondly, a business must ensure that the participants of the program understand the mentoring process, its benefits and are willing to commit the time and energy to be mentored.  The buy-in from participants is crucial and without it, the business will be wasting time and resources.

Thirdly, managers and the leadership team of a business should not only support the program prior to implementation but also be seen to support the program throughout its course. This inspires the participants, creates a positive environment for post mentoring action to take place and for new ideas to be heard and discussed.

The last aspect of a successful mentoring program is possibly the most important.  It is critical to find the right match between mentee and mentor.  The personalities of the two parties need to balance each other; not necessarily be the same, but be complimentary.  Ideally, the mentor will have the characteristics that the mentee either lacks or would like to strengthen. The experience of the mentor also needs to be relevant to the career journey of the mentee. There needs to be a high level of trust and respect in this relationship as a good mentor will need to have courageous conversations with their mentee, providing constructive critical feedback or bringing to the table a healthy dose of reality.

The process of matching mentee with mentor is often the most difficult as the success of a mentoring program is heavily dependent on the relationship between the two parties.  Connecting the right people together requires a high emotional intelligence as well as a vast network of professional contacts.

Formalised mentoring programs are a win-win for both individual employees and the business; however it is crucial to get all the elements right for the desired outcome. It is also important for businesses to understand that mentorship is an investment in a journey.  The benefits will be different in each case and one cannot expect a specific and direct correlation between mentoring and ROI.  If a business decides to invest in its people, there needs to be a long-term outlook of personal and professional growth.