Career coach offers job tips
The Eisenhower Public Library hosted a workshop on career adjustment. Titled "Five Signs Your Xareer is Stealing Your Soul," the workshop was led by career consultant Lori Howard. | Joe Cyganowski~For Sun-Times Media
Career transformation coach. Free tips available online.
Updated: December 24, 2012 6:21AM
HARWOOD HEIGHTS — One’s career may be stealing one’s soul.
Career transformation coach Lori Howard laid out warning signs during a seminar Saturday at the Eisenhower Public Library in Harwood Heights.
“Everyone wants their job to be meaningful,” she said. “To be more productive, you have to do what you love.”
She noted some people fall into a job, and that job turns into a career.
“But it takes more effort to get out of bed if you don’t like what you do,” she said.
Signs that one’s job is stealing one’s soul, according to Howard, are:
• Feeling physically or mentally tired;
• Feeling a sense of dread or anxiety at the start of every workday;
• Feeling empty, as though one’s job doesn’t matter; and
• Fantasizing about a being fired or laid off.
Also important is recognizing the cost, physically and mentally, of putting up with intolerable situations.
Some of the biggest mistakes many people make are to do nothing; take action without thinking it through; and not asking for help or support from family and friends, Howard said.
“Deal with burnout, honor your values and leverage your strengths,” she advised. “Every week pick a target — it doesn’t have to be big — and work on it.”
That target could be as simple as researching opportunities or reconsidering options.
Leaving one’s place of employment is not the only solution.
“Ask about other opportunities within the company,” she advised.
People might consider networking to find out what kinds of career opportunities are out there, suggested Deb Berger of Norridge, also a career coach who frequently collaborates with Howard.
The two are developing a career networking option in the area. Nothing much exists in the north and northwest suburbs, Berger said.
Howard bases her seminar on the path she traveled. After 15-plus years working in the corporate world, Howard hit a wall.
“I got burned out,” she said. “The company was bought out.
“I took the option of being laid off.”
She developed a process to figure out what she wanted from her next job. She now shares that process “so it won’t take people decades, like I did,” to find that perfect job, she said.
Carole Soldat walked away from the seminar with a validation of the importance of integrity.
“You have to analyze your personal values and see how they align with your employer,” she said.
“If your values are not compatible with that of the company, you can’t be happy, no matter what,” added Marty Haugland. “It’s about integrity.”