CAREER: Pessimist or Optimist at work

CHANGE AT WORK: ARE YOU A PESSIMIST OR OPTIMIST?

Self-Assessment Quiz ─ TRUE or FALSE:

  1. I know that change at my job can happen at any time, in any sort of form.
  2. I keep myself up-to-date professionally online so that I’m prepared for change.
  3. Getting too comfortable in my position can be detrimental to my career growth.

You’ve just gotten settled into your new position. You’ve told your mom and dad, your bestie and your cute dog walker that you are the new Account Manager in the online sales department. Only, on Monday, after just a month at your new position, there’s a major meeting called. In the BIG conference room (uh oh!). You and your twenty other co-workers are delivered a big blow. Your department head has been promoted to a new position – in CANADA! – and the online sales department is going to be downsized and repositioned across company-wide locations. The good news? You’re not losing a job. The not so good news? You have no idea what your job is going to be or even where!

With no real warning, you’ve been hit with a big ole whammie. How you react to said whammie, will make a big difference in the next steps of your career.

The Pessimist will:

Pout

“OMG! This is the worst thing ever! Wherever they put me is going to be awful. I hate that they didn’t give us any warning or even ASK us what we want to do? Ugh!!”

Ponder

“There’s no telling what’s going to happen. I could like have a desk in a broom closet somewhere and like, have no life because they’ll give me so much work to do, or what if I’m totally bored and it’s incredibly terrible and I’m going to end up an old lady with some awful job that gets me nowhere?”

The Optimist will:

Pounce

“I wonder what the next steps are? I would totally love to hear about any new opportunities and put my name in for any newly created positions. This is a huge chance to possibly jump to a higher salary or move to another state or country! I’m all for it!

Prepare

“I’m going to study this company like crazy. If I know what all the departments are responsible for, I’ll be ready with questions when it is my turn for them to call me in with next steps. I’m also going to make sure my resume and LinkedIn profile are up-to-date, because, ‘You never know!’ and I’m going to set a meeting with my boss before she leaves to make sure she stays and touch and see if she can give me any clues about what’s to come.”

I hope you can see that being an optimist offers a more strategic outlook to adopt in these sort of situations. Get your thinking cap on and think above and beyond the change itself rather than cycle about endlessly (like a dog chasing it’s own tail) in unknowns that you have no control over. While you’re at it, remember this: what you do have control over is choice; you have a CHOICE to stay or leave. You make your own life. Be in command of it. Optimistically.

PS, I’m hoping you answered TRUE to the Self-Assessment questions above. You’re already poised for change, unexpected or otherwise.

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