Start-ups begin as an idea, a vision of progression — the same applies in successful career development. Why not blow a breath of fresh air into your career development journey by taking an entrepreneurial perspective?

Have you ever considered your career as a start-up?

For some of us, career progression is a change in title and a move up the hierarchy. For others, it entails leading a team and experiencing working in a whole new capacity. Some might even choose to explore a different activity within the organization and others will see career success as furthering the feeling of meaning and impact that one makes whilst belonging to a group.

And what about you, what does the ideal career look like to you?

Find your why

Just as within career progression, each successful start-up has a purpose. The big WHY of the adventure, if you will. You must connect to your purpose if you wish to successfully launch your career vision into reality. Get clarity on and align with personal motivators by going deeper and discovering exactly what impact achieving this goal will have on your life:

  • I would earn more money
  • I would be a leader,
  • This promotion would be a recognition of my hard work all these years,

Yes, and yet let us take a look at what is behind the obvious. What would earning more money mean for you exactly? How precisely would becoming a leader impact your quality of life? What satisfaction would being acknowledged bring you?

By having a clear WHY — a conscious and powerful reason — for achieving that career position will mobilize the energy, commitment, and resilience needed to carry out a series of actions for achieving your goal.

How will you bring your vision to life?

The next question on a start-up founder’s mind to bring their vision to reality is HOW. The same steps apply to career progression: creating a career development strategy and breaking it down into tactical, actionable steps. These could include getting to know and understanding your audience. Finding those internal and external stakeholders that could join and aid you with achieving your vision. Identifying their true needs and answering them.

Along with looking externally, also look within: does my current mindset support my wish to achieve this particular goal? Does my current skill set and experience match the position? And if not what action do you need to carry out so that it does?

You will face challenges

As you progress throughout your career, just as in the nature of a start-up, neither is immune from the challenges that show up along the way and thus we must analyse proactively the competition and potential threats.

Many dragons can show up here. For example, a sense of entitlement where it is tempting to assume that a promotion is owed to oneself thus potentially leading to complacency. Another may be the assumption that your consistent hard work will be noticed and rewarded, rather than proactively presenting and communicating the merit of your work and the value it adds. And one of the most frequent of these dragons is self-sabotage. This can appear when as soon as change starts to happen (e.g. more responsibility is given just before the promotion) you feel the urge to back off as if fearing the success to come. How would you approach potential challenges so that they do not discourage you from your goal?

By looking at how a successful start-up thrives we can see how clarity of vision, purpose, strategy, and tactics of how to overcome obstacles can teach us a great deal about our own career progression. In other words, WHAT, WHY, and HOW. You can do it too! Use this framework for your goal setting and successful career development. So, let’s start! What does your dream career look like?

It's possible to master career progression whilst ensuring your wellbeing doesn’t take a toll. If you’d like to start putting your goals into action email us at or send us a message via the chat. You can also call us on+44 (0)2038352929. to book a PepTalk with Danguole today and get yourself in the fast lane to success.

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