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  • mattheelan

A yearly reflection on your career.

I understand there has been a lot written about the “Great Resignation” however several years ago I decided that I would use every November/December to reflect on my level of satisfaction in my role with the company. I don’t use any tools in order to make this evaluation but just put some serious thought around the following questions or topics: (1) Value of my time. Do you find the work that you are doing challenging and engaging? Do you find the work you are doing rewarding?

(2) Check your values. Do your personal values still align closely with the company values? And vice versa. (3) Check the culture. Organizations are living, breathing things and therefore so is the culture. Has the culture changed or evolved? Does it still align with the culture that originally attracted you to the company? Has the culture become toxic in terms of its willingness or desire to solve issues or problems? (4) Work/Life Balance. Does the organization make it easier or harder for you to achieve some sense of balance?

(5) Rewards. Have you achieved the goals that were set? If so, are you being properly rewarded for your performance and the organizational results? (6) Benefits. Have the company's benefits both traditional and non-traditional changed and improved? (7) Reputation. Is the organization that you are working for still viewed as a leader, innovator, or creative in the marketplace? Are they continuing to create value or have they become complacent?

(8) Learning and growing. Two somewhat different perspectives on this topic. Has the broader organization learned from its mistakes with respect to people, processes, and performance? Do you feel as an employee that during the past year you have grown in your own knowledge, skills, and experience? (9) Leadership/Management and Transparency. Do you know how well (or not) the company is doing? Do you have confidence in the team that is leading the organization? Have they made good decisions to achieve the goals of the organization? Have they connected you to those goals clearly? (10) Team members. The people you come to work with each day matter greatly. Has the organization done a good job of finding new team members that fit well within the team? Has the organization done a good job of working with those team members whose performance is poor? Have they acted quickly when it was obvious the team member was impacting the overall team's performance?

Lastly, and maybe more importantly, while you can choose to do this sort of self-evaluation it is non-negotiable that on a frequent basis the organization must solicit your feedback on how satisfied you are in your position/role. Of equal importance is what they do with this data once it is provided to the organization because sadly a fair amount of organizations fail to act on this feedback.

All of these questions and topics are all interconnected and our level of satisfaction for each moves along the continuum between dissatisfied to very satisfied. However, it is critical that you spend some part of your time reflecting and determining how satisfied you are in your position or role. I remind myself that life is short, and working with people who I like and respect is ideal, working with an organization that is respected for the work they do for their clients/customers and is financially rewarding is what we are all in search of.

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