One of the aspects we help our proteges keep track of on the Protagion platform is their career fulfilment. We ask about it initially as part of their self-directed Journey of Self-Discovery (designed to support them to think about their goals and desired future, and their route so far), and then also remind them in their Protagion diary to update their career fulfilment score over time. It ranges from zero to ten, with zero being the extreme of “completely not fulfilled, dreading work every day” and ten being the other extreme of “ecstatic, dreaming of bounding & skipping to work”.
Based on discussion with one of our mentors, we’ve done further thinking on the dimensions of career fulfilment i.e. what contributes to our fulfilment at work. There are three key elements:
While these are naturally affected by the working environment we’re in (including our boss and colleagues), we also have an influence over them personally, both through our attitude as well as our willingness to put ourselves forward for new challenges. In addition, great mentors or coaches can help us to improve how supported, accomplished and/or satisfied we feel, independent of our current workplace, by helping us develop, pushing us forward, or giving us different perspectives.
Do you agree with these dimensions of career fulfilment: satisfaction, achievement/challenge, and support? And, are there any additional dimensions that form part of career fulfilment for you? We’d love to hear your thoughts.
Some of our proteges ask our mentors and especially our coaches about how to discover their sense of purpose i.e. the broader why which motivates them and which could offer more meaning if they align their work with it. Tara Mohr, author of Playing Big*, names our desires to contribute to the world 'callings', and says there are different types: community callings, career callings, and creative or vocational callings. She defines a calling as “an inner sense of longing or inspiration to fill a particular need in the world”.
We receive many callings over a lifetime. They begin and end. Often, we’ll be pursuing more than one calling at a given time…What callings are showing up in my life right now? And yet, while there is multiplicity and diversity across our callings, if you look at the many callings you’ve felt in your lifetime, you’ll see some threads and themes… The threads and themes that show up again and again in our diverse callings point us to our larger, lifelong callings.”
Read more to discover Tara’s calling driving her to create her Playing Big programme to inspire others to achieve their dreams, as well as explore ways to recognise our own callings, including some familiar to me in my passion for people development, and my yearning to found Protagion to help professionals actively manage our careers.
While guiding our proteges through their careers, we come across challenging work situations which have the potential to worsen or completely derail a business relationship. Constructive (win-win) conversations are the ideal, but sometimes there are clashes and misunderstandings, perhaps rooted in differences in personality or values between individuals, or cultural norms.
One of our members recently shared an assessment she had previously done and told us how it helped her and her colleagues to understand each other better, especially in more stressful situations. It focuses on situations when an apology is given, and we agree that it can help to make sense of what different people expect from a sincere apology (as well as understand what you yourself like to hear from others).
The challenge is that “I’m sorry” can contain different layers of meaning depending on who is saying it, and more verbal explanation is often needed – others can’t infer what you specifically mean unless you explicitly tell them. To help smooth relationships, Dr Gary Chapman and Jennifer Thomas developed the 5 Apology Languages, based on their extensive discussion sessions with their customers, building too on their previous research.
When working with other people, wires can get crossed, tension can arise, and feelings can get hurt. Learning to move beyond these moments of frustration is crucial for collaboration. Specific and sincere apologies can go a long way to averting ‘sad, sad situations’. Read more to discover the 5 apology languages: adapting your approach to take genuine account of your co-workers’ apology preferences can help to smooth things over faster.