“I want a clear career path.”
Jennifer*, a 42-year-old solopreneur, told me this was what she was looking for when we started our Career Transition Coaching sessions together.
Jennifer had owned and operated her own business for five years, which at first was tremendously fulfilling. She loved the freedom of creating her own company and calling all the shots. It was immensely rewarding to be “the boss” and the responsibility empowered her.
But working by herself alone and often in solitude, she missed the camaraderie, team work and collegial atmosphere of working in an office environment. Her loneliness led her to question the entire decision to strike off on her own. Despite her success going-it-alone, she wasn’t happy, which made her unsure if she should return to a job working for someone else.
Career Transition Coaching: The Process
Our work together was aimed at uncovering ways she could pursue her passion (entrepreneurship and the things she was creating) while involving a larger team in the process. We were working towards getting Jennifer “out there” and involved in a relevant community of colleagues rather than going it totally alone with her business. She needed to build “community” into her gig as a solopreneur if she was going to continue to her business. On the flip side, we also examined what it would look like to return to a corporate job working for someone else.
One of the assessment tools I use in my Career Transition Coaching practice was especially useful to Jennifer on her journey. The 20 minute test I had her work through helped her identify strengths and weaknesses in her entrepreneurial work and relationships. The results not only supported what Jennifer already knew about herself, but gave us a shared vocabulary to articulate what works and what doesn’t work for her. This allowed her to see light at the end of the tunnel, and pursue what she was after in a more concrete way.
Meshing Who You Are With What You Want
Jennifer was excited that the results were so on target with how she felt about her old career and what a new one might look like. Our next step in Career Transition Coaching was to spend time uncovering her talents through discussions and stories of past experiences. Once we knew what we were working with, we created a strategy that applied her strengths in the workplace.
Career Transition Coaching Results
Today, although she has a master’s and a law degree, Jennifer is taking additional courses to build a foundation for a new career where she can collaborate with others, learn something new, retain her entrepreneurial spirit and realize her dreams. Jennifer is excited to build upon what she knows and launch into a new professional life that will energize her and be in line with her passions, need for camraderie and desire to have the support of a team. Reorganizing her work life gave her the balance and fulfillment she was looking for.
Starting Career Transition Coaching
Layoffs, retirement and moving within an organization can be an “a-ha” moment for personal reinvention. The isolation and “grind” faced by many solopreneurs and entrepreneurs can create confusion about purpose and direction. Are you ready to start a new chapter in your career, or are forces beyond your control making this the moment for you to start afresh? What changes do you want and need to make to pursue your dreams through your work? Check out the useful tips and another client case study on my Career Transition Coaching page.
It may be obvious when we are unhappy, going through the motions or stuck in a “rat race” in our career … but it can be difficult to articulate what gives us true joy … and take concrete steps to get ourselves off the hamster wheel. Contact Catharine Ecton for a complimentary, no-obligations Career Transition Coaching consultation and let’s discuss the possibilities. Or use the Appointment Scheduler and pick a time that works for you. I coach 90% of my clients over the phone and via Skype.
*Names have been changed to protect client confidentiality.