Don’t Let Complacency Derail Your Career

Article from KelloggInsight by Mark Zarefsky based on insights from Carter Cast, Published 7th November 2018

Cast, the author of The Right (and Wrong) Stuff: How Brilliant Careers Are Made—and Unmade, refers to people who have become complacent and resistant to change as “Version 1.0” employees who tend to lack curiosity, avoid taking risks, and want things to stay the same.

Indeed, in the modern work environment, failure to adapt can be lethal.

“You have to find ways to stay fresh, especially in this day and age with the massive rate of change in technology,” Cast says. “Disruption is everywhere.”

So what steps can you take to keep Version 1.0 tendencies from interfering with your career progress? Cast offers five tips.

  1. Understand the New Job – its important to remember that what worked in your old job and got you promoted is not a guaranteed success formula for the new job.
  2. Increase your learning agility – your ability to quickly develop and apply new skills is crucial, especially for those seeking senior management positions, you need to also be reflective – critically examining past efforts and seeking feedback on how to improve.
  3. Identify areas of Innate Resistance – understand these potential career blockers. You need continue to grow and learn, early in your career a learn to leverage ratio should be about 70:30, later in your career this may move closer to 60:40 but should not stray below that.
  4. Fight against Risk Aversion – trying new things and failing are inherent in any job.
  5. Expand your Constituency Base – cultivate and maintain a strong and active network can help you adapt to professional trends across industries.

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