8 Tips To Help You Covid Proof Your Career

business career mindset May 04, 2020

I don’t know what your individual situation is or how Covid has affected you, but I do know two things:

Firstly, everyone I speak to has some concern about their career either right now or for the future.

Some have lost their job or been furloughed; some are just really concerned about the long term future of their job; some are still working but worried about work; yet more are just reflecting and feeling stuck, or like this could be a time for a change. 

Secondly, whilst I can’t predict what the world will look like exactly, I do know that there’s a lot you can do right now to ensure that you’re best placed to succeed in whichever way you define success, whatever the world looks like.

I thought I’d use this week’s blog to share my top tips and some useful resources with you. A proviso before we get going:

Don’t get drawn in by the “should” crowd.

You might be getting told a lot or reading online about what you should be doing to manage your career, run your business, learn new skills, keep fit, manage your life, et cetera, et cetera. Indeed, I could tell you that you should be doing all the things I’m about to share with you.

But, I’m not here to tell you that you should do anything.

I am simply making some suggestions which I believe will help you tremendously to make sure you can navigate the career landscape beyond Covid-19, whatever that looks like.  

But, ultimately, you can decide whether to implement and what order works best for you.

I am sharing this because, whether you are just trying to get unstuck, needing a new job, or something else, I want you to be in the best position possible to thrive and do something you love that supports a lifestyle you choose.  

Here goes.

These are my top 8 tips for Covid proofing your career:

Tip 1: Enjoy yourself

I bet you didn’t expect that one at the top of the list - but it is right where it should be.

Whilst a lot of you may have time on your hands through furloughing or redundancy, there are also a lot of you who are working your socks off and perhaps struggling to set boundaries between work and home. Especially if work is at home right now.

Whatever your situation is, make sure that you take time out to enjoy yourself.

For example, do not work the weekends unless it suits you and take a day’s holiday now and then so you have time off. You would in the pre-covid world, so make sure you do now so that you have energy to focus on directing your own career as we move forwards, and also so that you have time to recharge your batteries.

Tip 2: Keep in touch with people

We’ve talked about networking in these blogs before.

Now is a great time to reconnect with people you haven’t been in touch with for a while and to connect with new people. Its also a great time to have some fun raising your profile.

Check out last week’s blog How to Stay Visible so you don't get Stuck for some ideas.

Tip 3: Manage your mindset

There’s a lot in the press about emotional stress and they’re banging on about how we’re heading for a mental health crisis. If they say it often enough people will believe it to be true.  

I’m not suggesting there won’t be issues, but you don’t have to be part of that crisis mentality if you learn about the key mindsets for career success and about EQ (emotional intelligence).

In the next section I mention a free three part video series which talks about some of those key mindsets. And if you get yourself into The Career Café you can watch the interview I did with EQ specialist Lisa Allen where she shares some top tips.

Tip 4: Review your skills

This is one of those things that you know you should do but never quite get around to doing because you don’t have time.

If you have got some spare time now, THIS IS YOUR CHANCE.

If you’re not sure where to start, look out for my new three video series which will tell you how.

I’ll announce details in The Career Café community and you will be first to know when it is available - it will be free and likely a game changer for you.

(The Career Café is free to join and there to support your career through covid and beyond. Simply click the link and ask to join.)

Tip 5: Profile an ideal role

This is the bit that most people forget to do (ever!)

Let me ask you, do you really know what is important to you at work?

Could you sit down and list your top six work values and articulate exactly how you need each one to be met? If the answer is no then this is an action I highly recommend and if it helps I show you how in the complimentary video series that I just mentioned.

Tip 6: Update your CV

Once you’ve completed that, now might be a wonderful time to update your CV. You can download templates for free by clicking here

Alternatively if you know that you would benefit from a full in-depth course guiding you every step of the way then pay a visit to "Create a CV that Works."

Tip 7: Think about how you want work to fit with your life going forward

Forget work-life balance! Think of it more as integration.

Work is one of many aspects of your life (work, family, health, finance, fitness, contribution, etc) and they have all got to work together.

Now is a great time to find some quiet space and let your mind be creative.

  • What would your ideal lifestyle be like?
  • What would you be doing?
  • What sort of people do you want to hang out with?
  • What do you want to have?
  • What needs to happen at work in your career to support that?

Tip 8: Get a career coach

Who do I choose and how do you know if they are any good?

It is a feature of any crisis that there will be people looking for ways to make quick and easy money from people who are desperate for help.

This is likely to be the case with careers as we move through and beyond Covid.

They will offer to write CVs for you, prepare you for interviews, and a whole host of other things. Some will be good and some will not.

So how do you know if they are any good?

I was speaking with a colleague in Australia this morning who’d had a client come in recently having paid AUD 3,000 for someone to write a CV for him. She described the CV as rubbish, and the client was devastated and said he just wouldn’t be comfortable talking about it at interview.

Don’t let that happen to you.

As an accredited Career Professional I thought it would be useful for you to have some tips to help you know who to trust and who can really help you get what you want and need. After all, you would expect your dentist, your hairdresser, your doctor, and so on to be properly trained and qualified. And you should expect your career coach to be professionally accredited or qualified too.

Here are some things to check:

Are they a member of a professional body for Career Development Professionals?

In the UK that is The Career Development Institute -  this assures you that they abide by a strict code of ethics which you can read here.

Did you know many members are qualified and accredited at a higher level and are on the UK Register of Career Development Professional?

You can search at www.thecdi.net/find-a-professional.

In addition to my first point, registered professionals have demonstrated through qualification and accreditation that they are effective and meet high professional standards. They are up-to-date with continuous professional development so they keep relevant with the job market.

Find out about them and who they work with.

Ask questions, look at recommendations on LinkedIn, visit their website, and other sources linking to them. Coaches will have different ways of enabling this connection - my approach is through a free discovery session where you can trial my services and understand if they are a good fit for you. 

Speak with them.

Ask whatever questions you need to ask to be sure that they are the right coach for you. They will also want to find out about what you want to achieve to be sure they are the best person for you to work with.

Following the above points will help you make sure that money you invest with a career professional is money well invested and gets you the best result for you.

I have been recommending these things for many years, but you should also know that as well as running my career coaching practice, I am currently President of The CDI and chair the Global Career Council for the Institute of Career Certification International and as such welcome any questions you may have around career coaching - please post below.

Remember, your career is your responsibility, so take the actions you need to secure your future.

Best wishes to all of my readers.



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