Chapter 13 Manage Your Career

I long to accomplish a great and noble task, but it is my chief duty to accomplish small tasks as if they were great and noble.

Helen Keller

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.


A Shining Star

In the morning, Jackson gives a lot of thought to what he is going to wear to work. Not only does he want to look nice, but he also finds that clients respect him more and look to him for answers when he dresses up. His company has a casual policy, but Jackson always wears at least dress pants and a button-up shirt. The program director wears the same outfit, and Jackson wants to be promoted some time, so he assumes it is best to look the part.

Another thing Jackson does for career success is to have an awareness of his power position. To create a stronger power position, Jackson is helpful to his colleagues, has a positive attitude, shows his problem-solving ability, and handles conflicts with people well. He also rarely complains. These are all human relations skills he has learned over his ten-year career. Jackson is a positive, upbeat person who others like to be around. He is polite, friendly, and confident, but not in an egotistical way.

Jackson’s manager says he is a prime candidate for a promotion. He is dedicated, commits himself to client satisfaction, and tries to continuously learn new things. When a deadline is looming, Jackson stays late to help his colleagues finish projects. Jackson always recognizes people’s contributions to the organization. Jackson epitomizes someone who is emotionally intelligent, which in turn, creates better relationships and thus more career opportunities.

Like Jackson, you can do many things to achieve career success, no matter what career you choose. It is impossible to achieve career success without human relations skills. This chapter will discuss some of the strategies, such as understanding power positions, dealing with change, and dressing and networking that can help propel anyone to have positive human relations and high emotional intelligence, which are both ingredients to career success.