The 1st January 2020 is just around the corner and it got me thinking about the start of a new decade and all the things I’d like to achieve over the next ten years.  It also got me reflecting on the past ten years with the realization of how much my life and work has changed.

What do you want to achieve in the next 10 years?

Benjamin Franklin is credited with the quote “by failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail”.  If this statement is true, now is a good time to think about your personal (eg. family, financial, health, travel) and professional (career) aspirations and consider the actions you need to put in place now, to successfully bring about the outcomes you want. 

Being an employment specialist, I hope this article encourages you to positively reflect on your what you’ve accomplished in your career so far and excitedly plan for the future.

But first, take a step back in time

If you think back to late 2009, can you recall what you were doing and what mattered to you at that time?  Are the things that drove you then still the same or have your ambitions changed?

My wife and I only had one child back then, who was four years old, so we had not yet embarked on the school journey.  Life seemed less complicated in many ways.    

I certainly didn’t have a smart phone then, so having fingertip access to emails, calendars and online databases wasn’t part of my everyday work life, as it is today.  Despite the GFC, the Brisbane recruitment market in late 2009 was still going strong from the resources boom in Australia (although that changed dramatically a few years later), so we were really kicking along beautifully here at Optimum Consulting.  Our biggest challenge at that time was finding enough great candidates with the specific skills required by our clients and honing our abilities in recruiting FIFO (fly-in and fly-out) workers to remote locations.

The here and now

Wind the clock forward a decade and I’ve now got two children.  Both are now at school and playing club sport, so my work days are being squeezed to do school drop-offs, pick-ups, after school activities and the weekends are largely filled with sporting commitments, helping with homework and birthday parties. 

On the work front, we’re dealing with the assimilation of the global gig economy, a coinciding push by worker representative bodies to bring more certainty and security to employment, along with a protectionist approach to international trade relations by many governments around the world.

Furthermore, a week doesn’t go by without being contacted about the newest recruitment technology that has been developed to revolutionise the industry.  Keeping up with all this new technology is almost a full-time job.  It is exciting that our industry, along with many others, is undergoing a transformation with data analytics and decision support at its core.

A vision for the next ten years

“What do you want to do with your life?” (if that quote makes you think of Twisted Sister, click this link to re-live this classic song and video clip from 1984).

We all have varying degrees of personal and professional aspiration.  After a quick quiz of the people in my office, here’s the variety of answers I received to the question, “what is your number one personal goal and your number one professional goal for the next decade?”.

Personal Goals                                                                 

  • “Have a growing family and be able to spend quality time with them while being financially sound”.
  • “To explore the globe and scuba dive in at least 6 other countries”.
  • “To create a nice family environment at home while not losing myself and who I am in the process”.
  • “To have paid off my property , be married and travel”.
  • “To be married, settled down and have a family of my own”.
  • “To have no debt and no more home renovating”.

Professional Goals

  • “If I’m honest, I’m not too sure. It would involve being in a position where I’m known in my field and can truly add value and contribute to a business”.
  • “To be in a role where I am still learning, sharing knowledge and have job security”.
  • “Still providing a valuable contribution to the business but having a successor well trained while I transition to retirement”.
  • “Have significantly progressed my career in terms of responsibility and remuneration, have multiple income streams”.
  • “Making enough money to be able to afford travelling the world”.
  • “To still be working here at Optimum – I’ll be bloody 65!!! – Scary thought”.

As you can see, there’s a mixed bag of goals there provided by team members who are at very different stages of their life and career. 

What about you?

What’s your vision for the next decade and what actions do you need to take to make it your reality?  No doubt, things will change and evolve along the way, but giving some real thought to the future, especially your working life, may be well worth the effort. 

If you are thinking about your long term career and want some input from those of us who work in the employment sector, fee free to reach out to our consulting team here at Optimum Consulting Group.

I wish you every success for the decade ahead. 

Ben Walsh

Ben is General Manager – Recruitment at Optimum Consulting Group, an Australian employment advisory firm.  He has been actively recruiting and managing teams for twenty years, with industry experience gained in Australia, Canada and Ireland. He is a former Regional Council Member Queensland/Northern Territory of the RCSA (Recruitment and Consulting Services Association of Australia & New Zealand).

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