Feeling Snookered in your career?As I sat watching Ronnie O’Sullivan achieve success over the weekend, it occurred to me that careers can also take a similar turn of either bad luck, skill, good fortune or a combination of all. Sometimes, it’s pot after pot, nice and easy – other times, it’s oh no, I’m snookered and I can’t see a way through. When you’re employed, you see the world from a different perspective than if you’re self-employed. What are you thinking about on Sunday around 3 or 4pm? Are you thinking about returning to work? Does it fill you with dread, or are you getting excited about the challenges you’ll face, making to-do lists for the next day? Are you popular at work? Do you actually know? How close are you to work colleagues? How many would you invite to your wedding? How many would you take time to visit if they had a spell in hospital? How many would visit you? Where am going with this? During my early career working for independent companies and plc’s, I learnt a lot. I was fortunate to achieve early career success by working hard and making a difference. I knew it all at 30, or so I thought. Self employment is a wake up call. It’s tough and it can be very rewarding. What you quickly realise is that you can count your friends on less than one hand. Turning to the employed world, there’s the political scene. Those that want you to do well and help with your career, working as a team and those who’d sooner see you failing, making way for them. Snooker is like this. Someone is waiting for you to make the next error, to give them a chance. They’ll make it harder for you to see your way through to the next shot. When you make a foul, they’ll get you to re-play it, so they can watch and gloat. Knowing which angle to use is all important. If you make an error, who’s watching and who will make your next move more difficult? High achievers (high scorers) are very aware of their surroundings, including which balls have which value, knowing how to plan ahead and think of strategies which leave them safe, for another day. If you are feeling snookered in your career, take some time to think about the people around you and whether they are in your way, or whether you can bounce off of them to achieve your next pot. Chalk up, it’s 2016.
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