Although most of what you’re about to read can be applied almost anywhere in the world, I’d like to dedicate this post to my readers from the Middle East as most of the experiences behind this were developed based on samples of individuals from the Arab World.
Over the past 7 years, I have LITERALLY interviewed over 300 persons for different roles within my companies and coached over 2,000 individuals from different parts of the world on topics like Personal Development & Career development and some of the findings I got is that you have NO idea how Simple things could answer a LONG AWAITED question or change a person’s Path in life.
It really doesn’t matter if you’re a Fresh Graduate or you’re in your 40s; I’ve Compiled the next 5 Tips that you can leverage BEFORE you go to your next Job Interview or to Review the way your Career is going so far.
TIP #1: SERIOUSLY Where do you like to be in 5 – 10 Years?
in 2007, 7 out of 10 Tech Students I interviewed in either China or India told me he/she wanted to Start his own Business (The Trendy word ENTREPRENEUR was not popular yet…) while 9 out of 10 Tech Students in Lebanon or Jordan I spoke to, told me he wanted to Find a Job in the Arab Gulf, and Mainly DUBAI…
The trend in 2010 in the Arab World was more into “Entrepreneurs by Title” where lots of students liked the Title more than the actual thing…
The question of “Where do you see yourself in 5-10 years?” is one of the TOP 5 Interview Questions of ALL TIMES – Worldwide… and one of the Most Frequent Questions PEOPLE TAKE LITELY.
SERIOUSLY PEOPLE…. Take one step backward and look at your life and HONESTLY think where do you like to see your self… and DON’T OVERTHINK How Realistic this would happen?
On Daily basis We put roadblocks that prevent us from seeing how we can pursue our REAL Dream, So we hide our Dream and exchange it with something that would Look more realistic at a certain time. Does the following Sound familiar: “Computers is the thing these days, so I will study computers… Oh Yea I’d like to be the General manager of a Company someday… I dream to be employed in a big company where I can live in Stability and peace of mind and make lots of money…”
Maybe becoming a “Taylor” sounds very LOW for some, but some of the BIG NAMES in the World of Fashion Design who Charge 200,000 $ for a Dress… are actually TAYLORs… but they don’t look at themselves as Taylors… They Make Beauty, they Create ART they Sell DREAMS…
And Yes… STOP THINKING ABOUT THE CURRENT REALITY… and Start Being Honest about what you like to do… Some positions in companies didn’t exist 3 years ago… did you know that lots of Companies these days employ “Social Media Managers” which are people who find themselves at ease working all day long on Facebook,Twitter and Linkedin… etc?? and GET PAID FOR THAT TOO!!!!
And Guess What! the World WILL CHANGE but your Dreams won’t..
So here’s what you need to do here… Answer this Question First:
If Miraculously you’re entitled to Chose ANY ROLE in ANY COMPANY, in ANY COUNTRY that you can do for the REST OF YOUR LIFE…. WHAT WOULD THAT BE???
Some people don’t know the answer to this, so here’s another task you can do… START putting a List of the things you DON’T WANT TO DO…
TIP#2: Define Objectively who you are?
OK so we all have our Highs & Lows, YES we all do; every human has something that can differentiates him/her from the rest, that makes him/her Stand up from the Crowd.
What you need to do, is identify those Highs & Lows, those Strength & Weaknesses… a great place to start is by starting to accept Honest Feedback from others… Starting with your Parents, Close Family, Friends, Classmates, Coworkers, Colleagues… anyone whom can give you an honest opinion about you..
Although the question is not always explicit in a Job interview, but “What are your Strengths & Weakness?” is a question that is also in the TOP 5 questions you’re asked…
Well there are lots of ways to be politically correct when answering this question in an interview, but what I’m implying
in this TIP#2… is to BE HONEST… don’t lie to your self! you need to be objective in what differentiate you from the rest of the world… and then Use that to your Advantage!!
TIP #3: Choose the Path of the HOW;
Now that you’ve defined the WHERE (TIP#1), the WHAT ( TIP#2) it’s time for the HOW
Ok Minimizing your options to 3 HOWs… people generally start being number 3… which is reacting to what happens around them, and they go & grow through life without a specific purpose or a defined objective..
Now being number 3 is the not necessary BAD, but let’s say there are 2 BETTER ways and Luckily for you, they are both identical in importance, meaning that neither is better than the other, you just pick which one suits you best..
The Opportunistic & The Strategic
The Opportunistic Re-act to Opportunities answering one Question only… “Will this opportunity move me HIGHER than I am right now?” and if the answer is YES… Then the opportunity is Suitable; and if the answer is NO; the Opportunity is not pursued and dropped.
People who chose the opportunistic growth normally are more “Open” to CHANGE than others; it means that they are ready to shift their life 180 degrees in order to grow, they can change career, country and lifestyle as it falls in their best interest;
The Strategic (also known as Logical) on the other hand has a TARGET in mind that makes him ready to keep his efforts / eyes FOCUSED on making it Happen as illustrated in the drawing below
By applying the Rules from Logical Thinking, a Strategic Thinker understands that if he’s aiming at climbing a tree to reach to the Top, the Leaves that holds the Fruits may not be on his Path…
in Summary to TIP #3 … you need to decide to either Stay at number 3 or Move to a Better way (decide to grow Strategically or Opportunistically ). and I would guarantee to you that you won’t find much troubles next time when you want to evaluate an opportunity. (do I take this one or the other or I wait for the next to come..??)
TIP #4 Value Yourself!
Ok this tip might sound LAME… or Obvious… but you have no idea how many people I met who have issues BELIEVING in their selves and in their abilities; I’ve met Incredible individuals, SERIOUSLY… I saw Superior qualities in Waiters, that I haven’t seen in some Executives… A First Level Shop Vendors having Exceptional Thinking & Communication Skills that you only see in Corporate Sales Executives… but the only thing lacking with them to move on…. is CONFIDENCE in themselves..
You can’t expect anyone to Value you before you start Valuing your self… and when you start doing that, you will start Valuing your TIME… and when you Start Valuing your Time… Others will start Seeing your Value…
Let me give you a small TIP inside this TIP… Low Level Workers Get Paid for what they DO… and High Level Executives Get paid for what they KNOW..
So it’s Plain Simple… The More you know, the more you will start valuing your Self and your Time will become more valuable to you and to others…
Learn Languages, Read Books, listen to Educational Audio, Read Articles, check out good movies, engage in interesting Conversations… KEEP Learning… and you never know how this will benefit your future.
TIP #5 Impress!
YES… Go with this ONE Objective in Mind… You’re down to ONE GOAL Only in your Life from Now ON…. IMPRESS or Go HOME!
If you’re looking to advance in your current job, if you want to shift to a new company, if you want to WIN sales… you need to Leave a GOOD impression on those who Hold the decision to your advancement.
If you want your Business to Grow, you need to IMPRESS BOTH Your Customers and Your Employees… if you want to Succeed in your Study you need to IMPRESS your Classmates and your Teachers… and Definitely if you want to WIN this Dream Job… Go and IMPRESS the potential Employer…
And guess what… WHAT’s the Worst that could HAPPEN ??
I met Jon Landau once (The Producer of Avatar & TITANIC), when I was still in Microsoft, we were talking about the technology they used in Avatar… But I got caught in one sentence that I Won’t forget as long as I live… He was talking about the movie Titanic and said “We Didn’t know if we could Do it… but we knew that if we won’t TRY… There will be NO TITANIC”
If you value your Self, you know where you’re going what your highs & lows are and which Growing path you want to choose… and Always Try to Leave a Good Impression… I can tell you that you will FIND:
If you need career advice, go seek one from a Professional…
if you want someone to talk to, talk to a friend..
if you’re looking for someone to be completely transparent with, find a Lover…
Just Deal with all of those BEFORE you go to a Job interview… the Interviewer no matter how friendly he/she can be… is NOT YOUR FRIEND…