Navigating the ‘messy middle’ of your professional growth: a helpful hack

Navigating the ‘messy middle’ of your professional growth: a helpful hack

Growth is never easy, 

One of the most challenging parts of up-levelling in our careers is navigating our way through, what I call, the ‘messy middle’. 

The ‘messy middle’ is the often uncomfortable part of our growth – that sits between our old habits, behaviours, strategies and ways of thinking, and the ones our Future Self needs us to step into, to progress and move forward. 

What I see happen, time and time again in my work with mid-career professional women, is this

The women who persevere and commit to staying the course through the messy middle (no matter how hard it gets) are the ones who successfully make the transition into the next phase of their careers.

They are the ones who are stepping up to the next level of leadership, being offered promotions and getting seen as the ones to watch, in their organisations.

The fact of the matter is, that change and professional growth never come if we allow ourselves to be paralysed by our fear and discomfort.

Professional growth requires us to act with courage.  

There is no shortcut or bypassing the discomfort.  It’s part of the process that we must embrace in order to get to the other side. 

Let me share some of my most successful tried-and-tested strategies with you  for transitioning through the “messy middle.”

  1. Call in support

One thing the ladies in my Ignite and Leadership Connection programs tell me time and time again, is that they would not be where they are in their careers, or had the skills and confidence to navigate the ‘messy middle’, if they hadn’t had the support to keep them moving forward. 

Stepping into the next level of leadership is uncharted territory, and it takes guidance, support and accountability (especially from someone who has been where you are!) to make the journey feel easier and less overwhelming.

  1. Get comfortable with feeling uncomfortable

Many women are under the impression that if something feels really uncomfortable, it’s because they’ve made a ‘wrong’ decision. 

But this isn’t always the case. In fact, I’d dare to say that everyone who is aspiring for growth in their career will feel some level of discomfort no matter how many years of experience they have tucked under their belt.

New things take practice and up-levelling in your career requires you to ‘re-wire’ and learn new skills, habits and behaviours – and this will often stretch you outside what feels familiar or comfortable. 

Discomfort is completely normal!

  1. See the ‘messy middle’ as a good thing

While it can be easy to feel overwhelmed by the ‘messy middle’, another way to look at it is through a more positive lens. After all, being in the ‘messy middle’ ultimately means that you’re moving forward and making progress!

This chapter is absolutely worth celebrating because it means you’re actively getting one step closer, each day, to where you want to be.

There is much gold to glean in this period of great change and growth.

The career you aspire for yourself really is just one decision away, on the other side of messiness. 

You get to decide whether or not you say ‘yes!’ – you truly do hold all the power in your hands. 

We have many mid career professional women, who have successfully navigated their ‘messy middle’, over in our free Facebook Group.  Join in the conversation and ask for advice, here.

 

LET'S CONNECT

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Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

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The fight for top talent. How to make the most of the HOT job market

The fight for top talent. How to make the most of the HOT job market.

Have you noticed that right now the job market is HOT!  Many organisations are falling over themselves to keep their best people or poach top talent from elsewhere.   

The reason for this is twofold.

Firstly, with international borders closed and likely to remain closed for some time yet, organisations are unable to rely on employing talent from around the globe, leaving a shortage of skilled professionals.

Secondly, the shakeup created by COVID has left many people reassessing their priorities and professional future.  With high levels of burn out and increased opportunities for working from anywhere – many are choosing to take time out of the workforce or moving on to work for themselves.  

What does this mean?

High quality talent is in demand. This puts you in the box seat to secure a promotion with your current employer or a new role in a different organisation – with a pay rise and the flexibility you could only dream about 2 years ago.  

But there are a few things you need to be doing now to make the most of this very unique time in history to put yourself in a powerful position. 

How to position for the best opportunities.

1. Know what you want.  If you don’t know what you want… it’s difficult to position yourself for it.  Lack of clarity leads to confusion and keeps you stuck where you are for way longer than is good for your career. 

2. Be valuable.  Being useful, helpful and reliable is nice but being valuable is what will make you highly sought after.  To tap into the best opportunities, you must be able to clearly articulate the value you offer your current or future employer?  

But being able to articulate your value is not enough.  It’s then about ensuring that you are working towards solving the big issues, delivering the results most needed or contributing in ways that have you being recognised for your leadership?  Be intentional and focus your time and energy on those activities that showcase the value you deliver for the business. 

3. Raise your profile.  No more flying under the radar, hoping that your good work will speak for itself.  I know that it should, but it won’t! It’s time to speak about the work you’re doing, the results you and your team are achieving and how you are contributing to the organisations most important goals.  Being a well-kept secret will not give you access to the best opportunities. 

4. Pimp your LinkedIn.  A well thought out LinkedIn profile is a must for all professionals.  You can no longer hide behind the excuse of “I’m a private person” or “It’s a waste of time.”  LinkedIn is a professional tool that all we should be embracing.  It is increasingly being used by recruiters and organisations to find top talent.  You are limiting your opportunities if you are not leveraging LinkedIn! 

5. Be intentional and stay focused. It is time to get strategic and focused on what you want. Yes… it may even be time to create a plan.  Get clear on what actions you will take and what changes you will implement to put yourself in a great position to take advantage of the best opportunities that are out there. 

Now is not the time to be complacent about your professional development. This window of opportunity will be brief.  The job market will not remain hot for long.  So, although you may be feeling tired, frustrated and bored or even struggling with mental fatigue as a result of the ongoing lockdowns and long periods of working from home, if you are ready to take the next step in your career – now is the time to act.  

Get clarity.  Get visible. Get out there.  And get ready to seize onto this unique moment in time. 

Like some help to make the most of the HOT job market?  Click here, answer a few questions and book a Leadership Support Session with me.

LET'S CONNECT

Click below to…

Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

Similar Blog Posts

Navigating the ‘messy middle’ of your…

Growth is never easy,

One of the most challenging parts of up-levelling in our careers is navigating our way through, what I call, the ‘messy middle’.

The ‘messy middle’ is the often uncomfortable part of our growth – that sits between our old habits, behaviours, strategies and ways of thinking, and the ones our Future Self needs us to step into, to progress and move forward.

Jane Benston

Courage over comfort – A career…

As humans we are wired for comfort. It’s why we resist change. It’s why we get stuck in a role that no longer works for us. It’s why we say no to amazing professional development opportunities. It’s why we avoid tackling the big issues or having the difficult conversations.

Jane Benston

Serious mature teacher with eyeglasses thinking of working questions at workplace

Are you making this one critical…

If you are in the market for a new role (and let me tell you the job market is HOT right now) then please listen up.

Most women I meet are going about their job search all wrong. It’s costing them valuable time, emotional energy and access to the best opportunities that are most likely to bring joy and fulfilment.

Jane Benston

Courage over comfort – A career building mindset

Courage over comfort - A career building mindset

As humans we are wired for comfort. It’s why we resist change. It’s why we get stuck in a role that no longer works for us. It’s why we say no to amazing professional development opportunities. It’s why we avoid tackling the big issues or having the difficult conversations.

It’s easier to operate from within our comfort zone – but as they say – nothing good or exciting happens there!

I recently interviewed a wonderful female leader about how she went about building her impressive career. She shared with us that one of her secrets to success was operating from a mindset of Courage Over Comfort.

Throughout her career she had time and time again chosen courage over comfort – not only at pivotal career defining moments – but as a guiding principle for the daily challenges that came across her desk.

Choosing courage is a conscious choice. It doesn’t happen by accident.

It’s not an easy choice, but it promises huge rewards – including massive growth, expanded career opportunities, building an impressive reputation or the simple pleasure of proving to yourself that you are capable.

So, whether it’s making a bold career move, tackling a tricky team performance issue or saying yes to opportunity to share your ideas with the senior leadership team – imagine what could be possible for you if you were to choose courage over comfort.

Here are 5 keys to operating from the mindset of courage over comfort.

1. Trust in your greatest potential. The only way to discover what you are truly capable of is to give it a go. We do not experience growth and we cannot demonstrate our capabilities when we remain firmly rooted within our comfort zone.

2. Embrace the suck. Not everything will go to plan when you choose courage over comfort. It’s very likely you’ll mess up. It will be unfamiliar and uncomfortable. You will need to resist the tempting call of comfort and be willing to go through the pain. It will get messy in the middle – but trust the process and trust that the growing pains will be worth it.

Remember – we may shine most brightly from the mountain tops while our biggest growth happens in the deep valleys!

3. What if? Before you take the plunge to step courageously into the new or unknown – ask yourself “If it all went terribly wrong, could I handle it?” The answer, 99 times out of 100, will be a very big YES. If you did get yourself into a pickle, you would work it out. You are talented, resilient and you undoubtably have a track record of bouncing back from missteps along the way.

4. Allow your inner circle to have your back. We all need a cheer squad in our lives – and they are all the more important when we choose courage over comfort. Let down your defences and let others in to support you, advise you, hold you accountable and ultimately celebrate your wins with you.

5. Build the muscle. Every time you choose courage over comfort you will be extending your comfort zone. What once required you to take a deep breath and put on your big girl pants will eventually take less and less courage. Commit to building your tolerance for discomfort by consistently flexing your courage muscle.

Where are you currently holding yourself back by choosing to stay firmly within your comfort zone?

Choose courage over comfort today – knowing and trusting that it will be worth it!

LET'S CONNECT

Click below to…

Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

Similar Blog Posts

Navigating the ‘messy middle’ of your…

Growth is never easy,

One of the most challenging parts of up-levelling in our careers is navigating our way through, what I call, the ‘messy middle’.

The ‘messy middle’ is the often uncomfortable part of our growth – that sits between our old habits, behaviours, strategies and ways of thinking, and the ones our Future Self needs us to step into, to progress and move forward.

Jane Benston

The fight for top talent. How…

Have you noticed that right now the job market is HOT! Many organisations are falling over themselves to keep their best people or poach top talent from elsewhere.

Jane Benston

Serious mature teacher with eyeglasses thinking of working questions at workplace

Are you making this one critical…

If you are in the market for a new role (and let me tell you the job market is HOT right now) then please listen up.

Most women I meet are going about their job search all wrong. It’s costing them valuable time, emotional energy and access to the best opportunities that are most likely to bring joy and fulfilment.

Jane Benston

Are you making this one critical job search mistake?

Are you making this one critical job search mistake?

If you are in the market for a new role (and let me tell you the job market is HOT right now) then please listen up.

Most women I meet are going about their job search all wrong.  It’s costing them valuable time, emotional energy and access to the best opportunities that are most likely to bring joy and fulfilment.

And – it’s quite possibly costing them getting paid what they’re worth too.  

The NUMBER ONE MISTAKE I see most people make is that they go out to the job market and ask; “I wonder what’s out there that I could do?”

They are relying on others to work out what would be a good fit for them and passively wait for the right thing to turn up.  It’s frustrating, emotionally draining and leaves them at the mercy of others.

If you’ve done this too… don’t beat yourself up. 

It’s the way most people approach the job market.

But it’s a flawed.  It leads you to trying to fit yourself into a role that’s not exactly the right for you. 

So, BEFORE you go and speak to recruiters, reach out to your network or engage a resume writer, do this one thing FIRST. 

Start looking within!

Take the time to truly know yourself!  Who are you?  What do you do better than most?  What value could you bring to an organisation?  What do you really want to being doing and just as importantly – what don’t you want to be doing?

Can you clearly answer these questions? 

If you can’t – you are NOT YET READY to put yourself out there on the job market!

It’s only once you can clearly articulate who you are, what makes you unique and what it is you actually want to be doing – that you can truly take a proactive, empowered approach to you job search. 

The best most aligned roles go to those who can say…

This is who I am.  This is what I can do.  This is the value I can bring to your business… Do you want me? 

This approach puts you on the front foot and has the RIGHT potential employers queuing up to speak with you.  And because they’ll easily recognise you as a valuable asset to their business – you’ll be in a powerful position to ask for the remuneration you know you deserve. 

So, if you haven’t yet done the work to truly know yourself – stop right now. 

Get clarity – then get back out there.

Knowing yourself WILL speed up the job search process, put you in the driving seat and increase the chance of you landing a role that will play to your strengths, stretch and challenge you and bring you joy and fulfilment.

LET'S CONNECT

Click below to…

Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

Similar Blog Posts

Navigating the ‘messy middle’ of your…

Growth is never easy,

One of the most challenging parts of up-levelling in our careers is navigating our way through, what I call, the ‘messy middle’.

The ‘messy middle’ is the often uncomfortable part of our growth – that sits between our old habits, behaviours, strategies and ways of thinking, and the ones our Future Self needs us to step into, to progress and move forward.

Jane Benston

The fight for top talent. How…

Have you noticed that right now the job market is HOT! Many organisations are falling over themselves to keep their best people or poach top talent from elsewhere.

Jane Benston

Courage over comfort – A career…

As humans we are wired for comfort. It’s why we resist change. It’s why we get stuck in a role that no longer works for us. It’s why we say no to amazing professional development opportunities. It’s why we avoid tackling the big issues or having the difficult conversations.

Jane Benston

Hate workplace politics? Here’s why you should embrace it.

Hate workplace politics? Here's why you should embrace it.

Eek! If you hate the very idea of workplace politics, I want you to hear me out.

I agree it’s icky and can be a truly ugly game.

It may make your skin crawl. Perhaps you’ve made a commitment to yourself that you would never do it.

You hate when you see it in others. And it’s frustrating to see them being rewarded for it – getting recognition they don’t deserve or even being promoted because they’ve played the game so well.

The truth is …

Avoiding the political game is hurting your career.

You’re missing out on being considered for the best opportunities.

Your best work is being overlooked or ignored.

And there’s even a chance you are being paid less because of it.

So, what’s the solution? How can you get seen, heard and recognised without playing politics?

The answer is…

Get comfortable with tooting your own horn – just a little – in a way that allows you to remain humble, authentic and in integrity.

It’s time to get comfortable with not only doing great work – but also to speak about the great work you and your team are doing.

It’s not icky. It’s not political. It’s smart!

It’s time to step out from the shadows and stop hoping and expecting your work to speak for itself. Yes, I know your great work should speak for itself – but at this level of leadership – it won’t.

It’s time to get comfortable with speaking about what you are doing and the value you are contributing to your organisation.

Leaders are visible. Leaders actively build their profile. Leaders consciously create a reputation that positions them for what they want to be known for.

So, if you hate the political games – don’t reject it. Instead, create your own game.

Raise your profile, build your reputation, get the recognition you deserve – but do it your way…. in a way that’s authentic to you.

Don’t reject it outright. There’s lots to be learnt from understanding the politics but it doesn’t mean you need to play the game in the same way as those who make your skin crawl.

Find your own way.

Jane

P.S. If you’re a mid career professional woman who is ready to invest time and energy in your professional development, here are some ways I can help you:

1. Join the Leading Ladies to connect with mid career professional women

It’s our FREE Facebook community where talented professional women, dedicated to growing into their full leadership potential, connect and share. Click here to join the group.

2. Join our Ignite Program to achieve more while working less.

I’m brining together a small group of mid career professional women to help them step up as leaders, have a bigger impact and get the recognition they deserve – without working harder. If you’re feeling stuck, under-appreciated or nearing burnout, send me a message and I’ll get you all the details.

3. Work with me privately

If you’d like to work directly with me to help you to take the next step in your career… just send me a message … tell me a little about where you’re at and what you’d like to work on together, and I’ll arrange a time for us to connect.

 

LET'S CONNECT

Click below to…

Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

Similar Blog Posts

Navigating the ‘messy middle’ of your…

Growth is never easy,

One of the most challenging parts of up-levelling in our careers is navigating our way through, what I call, the ‘messy middle’.

The ‘messy middle’ is the often uncomfortable part of our growth – that sits between our old habits, behaviours, strategies and ways of thinking, and the ones our Future Self needs us to step into, to progress and move forward.

Jane Benston

The fight for top talent. How…

Have you noticed that right now the job market is HOT! Many organisations are falling over themselves to keep their best people or poach top talent from elsewhere.

Jane Benston

Courage over comfort – A career…

As humans we are wired for comfort. It’s why we resist change. It’s why we get stuck in a role that no longer works for us. It’s why we say no to amazing professional development opportunities. It’s why we avoid tackling the big issues or having the difficult conversations.

Jane Benston

When your workload demands that you speed up – CALM DOWN!

When your workload demands that you speed up - CALM DOWN!

If there’s one common denominator among all the mid-career professional women I meet, it’s that they’re busy.

They’re not sitting at their desks twiddling their thumbs …

They’re running from meeting to meeting, making and taking calls, sending email after email and working through their never ending to-do lists.

They’re in constant GO mode and many of them are feeling stressed out and overwhelmed because of it.

When your work days are busy and your to-do list is filled to the brim, it can seem like the only logical solution is to work more quickly so you can get more done.

But this couldn’t be further from the truth.

In actual fact, your best work and your greatest productivity potential happens when you are calm, and when you slow down.

Getting yourself into a calm state leads to:

  •  A greater ability to focus
  • Less mistakes and higher quality work (therefore, more likelihood of getting a promotion!)
  • An ability to better cope with stressful situations
  • More job satisfaction.

Now I know what you’re wondering …

Jane, how can I find a sense of calm when I’m in the thick of it, have tasks piling up and am feeling overwhelmed?

Here’s what I suggest:

1. Create a calm start to your day

Now I know this may sound impossible, particularly if you’re a busy Mum…. but stay with me. 

I know it’s easy (and common!) to instantly start thinking about work the moment you wake up…  or worse, you feel compelled to log to check emails.  

When you have lots on your plate, this makes sense.

But instead of aiding you, constantly being ‘switched on’ and ‘sped up’ is doing you, and your work performance, more harm than good.

Inviting calm into your first waking moments (or longer if you can!) can completely shift your whole day.

You don’t have to do anything extravagant – even just a cup of coffee in silence, a walk around the block or a few pages of a great book can fill you with a sense of calm that will aid you when you sit down to work.

What one small thing can you introduce into your morning routine that would help you start your day more calmly?

2.  Step away from your desk during the day

Stopping to take a lunch break can feel like a luxury when you’re busy.   But stepping away from work actually has a funny way of sparking creativity, inviting in more clarity and aiding productivity.

As shared in this article, “Taking breaks, even micro ones, can help to recharge one’s brain, relieve stress [and] increase energy levels”.

Breaking away from your computer and to-do list takes commitment, especially if you’re busy, but I encourage you to give it a go and get curious about how it impacts your productivity and wellbeing!

3. Shift your mindset

Have you ever had thoughts like “I have no choice but to work harder and faster” and “I’ll never get all this done”? 

Sadly these thoughts do little other than make you feel more stressed and overwhelmed.

When thoughts like this pop up, try and replace them with alternatives like:

“I’m only one person. I’ll get as much done as I can, but I will respect my limits. Tomorrow is a new day.”

“When I stay calm, my productivity increases. I know that looking after myself aids my work performance.” 

Your mindset is powerful and simply shifting how you perceive and approach situations can have a huge impact on the quality of your work and how you feel.

__________________________________________________________________________

Learning how to slow down and invite calm into your busy day takes practice and patience (you’re essentially learning a new skill, after all!)

If you’d like a helping hand learning how to work differently, I invite you to a free Facebook community Leading Ladies – a private space to help you breakthrough to your next level of leadership, impact and recognition, without you having to work harder or sell your soul.

LET'S CONNECT

Click below to…

Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

Similar Blog Posts

Navigating the ‘messy middle’ of your…

Growth is never easy,

One of the most challenging parts of up-levelling in our careers is navigating our way through, what I call, the ‘messy middle’.

The ‘messy middle’ is the often uncomfortable part of our growth – that sits between our old habits, behaviours, strategies and ways of thinking, and the ones our Future Self needs us to step into, to progress and move forward.

Jane Benston

The fight for top talent. How…

Have you noticed that right now the job market is HOT! Many organisations are falling over themselves to keep their best people or poach top talent from elsewhere.

Jane Benston

Courage over comfort – A career…

As humans we are wired for comfort. It’s why we resist change. It’s why we get stuck in a role that no longer works for us. It’s why we say no to amazing professional development opportunities. It’s why we avoid tackling the big issues or having the difficult conversations.

Jane Benston

5 keys to creating momentum for career growth

5 keys to creating momentum for career growth

Have you ever wanted to create change in your career but felt overwhelmed by the enormity of the task ahead? The idea of stepping up to the next big thing, changing career direction or creating some new results, can at times seem totally daunting and a task too large to begin.

The comfort of what we know is all too alluring…. but often not at all satisfying. We delude ourselves into thinking that avoiding risk and sticking with the status quo – however miserable – is the smartest and best course of action… when of course it isn’t.

I know this to be true because I stayed in a job for more than 18 months even though I was totally miserable, unproductive and doing a lousy job. I stayed, wishing, waiting and hoping that things would improve but of course they never did.

It took a “crisis” to finally push me to find the courage, to take action and move on.

So often I see leaders who want to create change in their career, but are too busy, overwhelmed and exhausted to find the space in their schedule to even pause to think about what they truly want, let alone reflect, create a plan and commit to action.

Here are 5 keys to creating momentum for career growth.

  1.  Press the pause button. Get off the treadmill and be still. That’s right, just stop! Until you take time out to think, create and plan nothing is likely to change. The busyness of our lives does not allow for creativity, problem solving and we are unlikely to see the opportunities that are right there waiting to be seized.

Start by blocking out a chuck of time to reflect on your current career status.  Grab a pen and paper and jot down your thoughts. What is working for you?  What frustrates you?  What do you wish was different? What do you love most about your current role? Does your role provide a positive challenge for you and are you being given opportunities for growth?

  1.  Assess the cost of maintaining the status quo. I wonder what it is costing you right now by maintaining the status quo? Is your health taking a hit? Are you neglecting some of the people who are most important to you? Has your career flat lined? Are you bored, uninspired and feeling lost?

Getting clear on the true cost of staying stuck is often enough to create the motivation and the drive to create change. Life is too short to settle for mediocre!!!

  1.  Listen to your intuition. If you have experienced a quiet and persistent gut reaction for some time telling you that something has to change… well it is now time to listen. The busier we get the less we listen to our own intuition but this is exactly when we need to stop and ask ourselves what is our intuition telling us here.

Our intuition can be a brilliant guide, particularly when we pair it with our rational, analytical brain to assess the risk, weigh up the options and assess the facts. Bring the two together and you have a powerful foundation for effective decision making.

  1.  Find support. Yes you are a strong independent woman…. but you don’t need to go alone. Reach out to your network and ask for their support and assistance. You will be surprised at how willing people will be to provide you with their help if only they know how.

Women are great at building relationships, connecting and sharing ideas. We are born to nurture the growth and development of others. You have no doubt extended a helping hand to others at some time, now it is your turn. Let people know what opportunities you are looking for and share your career dreams and aspirations.

Opportunities for promotion, career change or a position that will allow you more flexibility and lifestyle choices may be as close as one conversation with the right person.

  1.  Know you are capable. Yes You! You’re capable of so much more than you might at first think. Even if the worst was to happen, I am guessing you could handle it.

Every day I work with women who underestimate their potential. There seems to be an epidemic out there of women who down play their achievements, question their value and are blind to the unique skills and talents they bring to their work.

It is time to shift your focus from what you can’t do to what in fact you can!

And then take action. Nothing changes without action and without doing some things differently.

Now is your time. You have been waiting long enough. If you want to create change in your career it is up to you. The hardest step of any change is the first so…. be bold, be brave and believe that you can.

Know that something needs to change but unsure where to start? 

Book in for a Leadership Support Session here, and together we’ll create a tangible plan to move you forward courageously, strategically and in a way that honours and utilises your strengths.)

LET'S CONNECT

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Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

Similar Blog Posts

Navigating the ‘messy middle’ of your…

Growth is never easy,

One of the most challenging parts of up-levelling in our careers is navigating our way through, what I call, the ‘messy middle’.

The ‘messy middle’ is the often uncomfortable part of our growth – that sits between our old habits, behaviours, strategies and ways of thinking, and the ones our Future Self needs us to step into, to progress and move forward.

Jane Benston

The fight for top talent. How…

Have you noticed that right now the job market is HOT! Many organisations are falling over themselves to keep their best people or poach top talent from elsewhere.

Jane Benston

Courage over comfort – A career…

As humans we are wired for comfort. It’s why we resist change. It’s why we get stuck in a role that no longer works for us. It’s why we say no to amazing professional development opportunities. It’s why we avoid tackling the big issues or having the difficult conversations.

Jane Benston

Missed out on a promotion?

Missed out on a promotion? 

Have you ever missed out on a promotion or a role that you think is perfect for you? You’ve got the runs on the board.  You do great work.  You’ve got the experience, but for some reason the hiring manager just can’t see why you would be a great addition to the team. 

On top of that, when you ask for feedback about why you didn’t get the role, they are unable to provide you with anything meaningful or useful for you to work on for next time. 

It’s not uncommon for women to reach out to me after this happens.  They are confused, frustrated and self-doubt is creeping in. 

Missing out on a role can feel like rejection. 

And with that, the voice inside our head, or as I like to call it “the shitty committee” can take over. 

“I’m not good enough.”

“Is this all I’m capable of?”

“I’m not cut out to be a senior leader.”

All of which can ultimately then lead to a crisis of confidence.

Can you relate?

So, here’s the thing.  You are good enough and you are absolutely capable of the role you want.  And, you don’t need a PHD or MBA to prove it. 

However, you do need to make a few changes.  We all know – if you keep doing the same things, you’ll keep getting the same results. 

Here’s what I’d suggest you focus on to position for the next level of leadership.

    1. Know your strengths. It all starts with knowing what you are great at and what value you bring to an organisation.  Leadership roles require you to do more than high quality work.  You must bring value to the activities that matter most to the organisation.

      To get access to those higher-level roles you need to be able to articulate who you are and what you can contribute – in your LinkedIn profile, your CV, when building strategic relationships and in a job interview.

      Speaking about what you’ve done is not enough.  It’s your job to make it easy for the hiring manager to understand why they need you in their leadership team.  

    1. Believe in your worth.  Ok, so your confidence has taken a knock.  Let’s fix that… and fast.  If you don’t believe in you, you can’t expect anyone else to see your value.

      There is something magnetic about someone who oozes understated self-confidence.  They have a certain presence that draws us in and compels us to sit up and take notice.  I want you to have that authentic X-factor that believing in your worth brings.

      Begin by shifting your thinking away from the negative self-talk. Notice every big and small win that contributes to the delivery of the organisation’s goals.   Little by little your self-belief and sense of worth will return.

    1. Prioritise promotion. The goal here is to make sure that people know who you are and the great work you do.  You want people to be speaking positively about the value you bring – even when you’re not in the room.  This is about building advocates who will promote you and help you to get access to the very best opportunities.

      As much as I know that self-promotion isn’t your thing… I’m going to suggest it’s time to toot your own horn.

      Trust me.  You can do this while maintaining your integrity.

      It’s as simple as sharing a little each week about the progress you and your team are making on those projects that matter most.

So, if you’ve been overlooked or missed out on a promotion or pay rise – let’s commit to doing a little work now so when the next opportunity pops up, you are ready.  My goal is that by doing the work now, you are the obvious choice for the most exciting opportunities.

If you’d like some support, guidance and accountability to ensure you do the work, I invite you to join us in our next intake of Ignite – our 8 week group coaching program for mid-career women who are ready to step up to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.

LET'S CONNECT

Click below to…

Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

Similar Blog Posts

Navigating the ‘messy middle’ of your…

Growth is never easy,

One of the most challenging parts of up-levelling in our careers is navigating our way through, what I call, the ‘messy middle’.

The ‘messy middle’ is the often uncomfortable part of our growth – that sits between our old habits, behaviours, strategies and ways of thinking, and the ones our Future Self needs us to step into, to progress and move forward.

Jane Benston

The fight for top talent. How…

Have you noticed that right now the job market is HOT! Many organisations are falling over themselves to keep their best people or poach top talent from elsewhere.

Jane Benston

Courage over comfort – A career…

As humans we are wired for comfort. It’s why we resist change. It’s why we get stuck in a role that no longer works for us. It’s why we say no to amazing professional development opportunities. It’s why we avoid tackling the big issues or having the difficult conversations.

Jane Benston

Why You Need A Professional Support Team

Why You Need A Professional Support Team.

More than ever, we need to be creating our very own professional support team.

With job descriptions asking more of us, days being fuller, aspirations getting bigger, and for some, COVID-19 requiring us to work without our team by our side, we could all use a helping hand (or three!)

I want to take this opportunity to ask you …

Are you calling on the support of others?

Or, are you doing it all alone?

As fiercely independent and successful women, we’ve prided ourselves on how much we can do and what we can achieve on our own

But just because we can do things on our own, doesn’t mean we have to, or should.

In fact, working with and being supported by others lightens the load, allows us to shine in our zone of genius, progresses us further AND makes work feel more enjoyable!

If you identify as being a woman who tends to ‘fly solo’, I want to offer you three ways you can begin to create your professional support team, and get the helping hand you deserve, today.

Quit being a lone ranger.

If you were to take a guess, how many times a week do you fall into the trap of doing it yourself rather than delegating the task or asking for support?

Do you chair every meeting?

Are you the first to put your hand up to say yes?

Do you respond to emails that someone else could?

Do you hold the entire load of projects on your shoulders?

If you’re sitting there nodding your head, know that you’re not alone!

BUT, I want you to begin to notice when you’re trying to do everything on your own – because self awareness is the first step towards change!

While I have no doubt that you’re doing a great job, you don’t have to be a lone ranger.

Women are notoriously bad at asking for help – and on the flipside of this, notoriously good at doing a great job at doing it all.

But working this way isn’t sustainable, and it doesn’t get you seen as a highly competent leader.  

Consider:

Why do I choose to work as a lone ranger?

How is this harming me, my career and the development of my team?

Share the load and ask for help

In order to progress our careers, we have to share the load and ask for help.

You cannot have one without the other – not in the long run anyway!

Asking for support doesn’t make you incompetent or incapable. In fact it’s the complete opposite – asking for support is the sign of a great leader!

There’s two very important points I want to make here:

    • Sometimes as women we OVER FUNCTION which allows everyone around us to UNDER FUNCTION. This isn’t fair to you, or to them! We teach people how to treat us, what to expect of us, and what we expect of them. What message are you sending?
    • A key point of sharing the load and asking for help is accepting that others may not do things how you would – and this is okay! Different does NOT equal bad!

Want to dive more deeply into this topic of sharing the load? 

I wrote this article for you here!

Consider: 

What tasks and responsibilities am I doing that someone else could?

Who else in my team could lend a hand?

How is my tendency to do it all, a disservice to myself and others?

Know that you are worthy

The issue of worthiness comes up with many of the women I work with.

Feeling unworthy leads to them overworking, trying to do it all and being perfectionists.

I want to remind you that you ARE worthy. Simply by being yourself, you are intrinsically worthy.

You are worthy of recognition.

You are worthy of investing in yourself.

And most of all – you are worthy of having the very best support team around you!

Women who feel worthy aren’t afraid to ask to have their needs met and put their hand up for help.  

Whether it’s a cleaner to keep the house in order, a personal trainer to keep their body in shape, a mentor to stretch their thinking or a team of A players to carry the load – their support team is essential to their professional growth, success and sanity. 

They’re happier and healthier for it, and more successful because of it.

Consider: 

Do you feel worthy of being fully supported?

What type of support would be most beneficial right now to assist you to achieve your professional goals? 

I want to hear from you! 

Please pop on over to our free Facebook Group for mid career professional women, share your experience and join in the conversation! 

Let us be a powerful element of your professional support team!

See you in the group!

LET'S CONNECT

Click below to…

Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

Similar Blog Posts

Navigating the ‘messy middle’ of your…

Growth is never easy,

One of the most challenging parts of up-levelling in our careers is navigating our way through, what I call, the ‘messy middle’.

The ‘messy middle’ is the often uncomfortable part of our growth – that sits between our old habits, behaviours, strategies and ways of thinking, and the ones our Future Self needs us to step into, to progress and move forward.

Jane Benston

The fight for top talent. How…

Have you noticed that right now the job market is HOT! Many organisations are falling over themselves to keep their best people or poach top talent from elsewhere.

Jane Benston

Courage over comfort – A career…

As humans we are wired for comfort. It’s why we resist change. It’s why we get stuck in a role that no longer works for us. It’s why we say no to amazing professional development opportunities. It’s why we avoid tackling the big issues or having the difficult conversations.

Jane Benston

Not Loving Your Work? This Could Be Why!

NOT LOVING YOUR WORK? THIS COULD BE WHY!

The average Australian spends 1831 hours working, every year! 1831 hours! (Source).

And if you are anything like the vast majority of the hard working professional women I help, your number is likely to be much more than this.

Work plays a huge role in our lives and to be frank, we spend way too many hours at work, for it not to be fulfilling. 

I truly believe that work can, and should, be enjoyable and rewarding!

Sadly though, many of the mid career professional women I meet, don’t feel this way about their work – instead, they feel unfulfilled, bored and undervalued. 

My experience has shown me that in order to love the job you’re in, it needs to meet three critical criteria:

1. It needs to support you to contribute in a meaningful way

2. It needs to offer you opportunities for growth (boredom can set in pretty quickly if you’re not being stretched and challenged!)

3. You need to feel respected and recognised for the great work you do.

When one or more of these elements are missing, work can feel hard, monotonous and unfulfilling. 

Let me give you an example of how this can play out in real life, and what you can do about it.

I recently spoke with a very talented woman who’d previously had lots of success in her role. When I asked her how she felt about her work now she said, “it sucks”

My heart always sinks when I hear work described this way.  It reminds me of a time when I pretty much disliked everything about my work too.  

But enough about me…

When we took a deeper look into why she was feeling this way about her work, we discovered that her need for growth – number 2 on the critical criteria list – wasn’t being met. She’d outgrown her job role and was no longer feeling stretched in her work. Because of this, she was feeling uninspired and unfulfilled. 

So here’s the thing… to grow we need to be doing work that stretches us and that means stepping outside your comfort zone.  Staying stuck, doing the same work week after week, month after month will after a time drive us just a little crazy.  

We are now working together to discover opportunities for growth.  The good news is – it doesn’t always mean you have to move jobs.  Very often all it takes is to tweak the way you are approaching the job you’re in.  It may be as simple as stepping up your focus as a leader or taking on a new more challenging project. 

I want you to ask yourself …

How do I currently feel about my work?

Is it fulfilling me? Is it enjoyable and rewarding?

If your work is no longer making you jump out of bed in anticipation of a great day, consider which of the three critical elements you’re missing.

1. Meaning and contribution. 

Are you hoping to find more meaning and to contribute in a more significant way?

2. Need for Growth.

Are you looking to be stretched and challenged and the opportunity for growth?

3. Respect and recognition.

Would a little more respect and recognition give you the lift you need?

Although work dissatisfaction can feel really uncomfortable, the great news is that it’s in your power to create change!

Once you’ve identified exactly why you’ve fallen out of love with your work, it’s easy to find a solution!


If you’d like some help to find your perfect pathway back to work fulfillment again, I’d be honoured to connect. 

You can book in for a Leadership Support Session here, and together we’ll create a tangible plan to support you to help you fall back in love with what you do.

LET'S CONNECT

Click below to…

Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

Similar Blog Posts

Navigating the ‘messy middle’ of your…

Growth is never easy,

One of the most challenging parts of up-levelling in our careers is navigating our way through, what I call, the ‘messy middle’.

The ‘messy middle’ is the often uncomfortable part of our growth – that sits between our old habits, behaviours, strategies and ways of thinking, and the ones our Future Self needs us to step into, to progress and move forward.

Jane Benston

The fight for top talent. How…

Have you noticed that right now the job market is HOT! Many organisations are falling over themselves to keep their best people or poach top talent from elsewhere.

Jane Benston

Courage over comfort – A career…

As humans we are wired for comfort. It’s why we resist change. It’s why we get stuck in a role that no longer works for us. It’s why we say no to amazing professional development opportunities. It’s why we avoid tackling the big issues or having the difficult conversations.

Jane Benston