7 tips to shake off a midcareer slump
So you’re on the back nine. It doesn’t mean you have to back down.
Feeling stuck at work? After 20 years of pounding the pavement, it can be easy to feel like you’ve reached a career plateau. But don’t sit there and simply accept it. A happy work life requires an understanding of where you are and where you want to go. This is as true midcareer as it was when you were just starting out.
Monster asked 7 career coaches for ways you can continue to make progress and truly shine during the second half of your career.
Think about your passions
“Make sure you're doing what feeds your soul. If you're not, now is a good time to figure out what would, and take the steps to make it happen. With people living longer and working well past the traditional retirement age, you can have a second—or third—act!” —Lisa Phalen of LJP Consulting in Phoenix
“Plan for a future where you will continue to work—happily, productively and seamlessly—far beyond what we typically think of as the traditional age of retirement. Take time regularly to reflect on your future. Above all else, redefine your career as having a beginning that is followed by a series of middles, maybe even an occasional reinvention for good measure. The goal will be to replace retirement with repurposing.” —Roy Cohen, career coach and author of The Wall Street Professional's Survival Guide, based in New York City
Make your plan
“Don’t leave your career to chance; map out a strategy for where you want be and how you hope to get there. Establish goals for career development, advancement and direction, revisiting the plan at regular intervals to re-assess and modify as your career progresses and changes.” —Adrienne Tom of Career Impressions in Calgary, Alberta
Grow your network—again
“You benefit by managing your career, in addition to simply doing your daily work projects. Take stock of what you are good at, what is important to you and what you enjoy, and maximize your time accordingly. As part of this, it is critically important to advocate for yourself—speak up, share your accomplishments, communicate what you want and find sponsors both within and outside of your company.” —Lori Scherwin, founder of Strategize That in New York City
Reach out to your mentors
"Continuously engage and re-engage with your mentors and sponsors once or twice a year. With shifts in the marketplace, they can both clarify your goals and help you achieve them." —Jason Levin, career and outplacement coach at Ready, Set, Launch in Washington, D.C.
Build trust by serving others
“For midcareer executives to move to that next level, you need to cultivate trust [because] advances in your career will be determined by people who know, like and trust you. So seek out opportunities to be of service to others—especially your team.” —John Paul Engel, president of Knowledge Capital Consulting in Sioux City, Iowa
Try something daring
“If you’re stalling in your career growth and your interest with your job/industry/sector [is lagging], consider a career transition fueled by a midlevel internship. The real value of such an experience is getting your foot in the door of an exciting new sector where growth may be—or become—stratospheric. You may have a tough time landing a paid job in that field, given your lack of direct experience, so take a gamble that may pay off in spades.” —Alex Twersky, career manager and vice president at Resume Deli in Hoboken, New Jersey
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