When on the job, striving to succeed or when looking for work, Survivability is conscious and deliberate “career self-management”.
Managing a career today is a little like steering a small boat through rocky shoals. The workplace is at high tide, frothing and churning. If your boat is sturdy and if you’re prepared to think and react strategically, you will greatly increase your chances of survival.
Strategic thinking of this kind is often called “career self-management”. We call it Survivability.
Survivability is the blend of skills and abilities you need to manoeuvre successfully in a volatile, competitive and complicated workplace.
Personal Survivability builds in a step by step process.
First, you need to know yourself, in all your complexity. You need to know your strengths, likes and dislikes, natural skills, interests and values. You need to understand what motivates you to get up in the morning and head off to work. In short, you need to understand your own personality and its nuances and how it helps, or perhaps hinders your career progress.
You need to be equally aware of the workplace in these early days of the 21st Century. This is the marketplace in which we all sell our skills and abilities. Understanding the changes underway in this marketplace will help you anticipate what those changes will mean to you down the road. Understanding what employers need and expect will help you assess yourselves against those needs and expectations.
You also need to be able to blend concrete and accurate information about yourself with comprehensive information about the workplace and find work that “fits” you. In other words, work that challenges and satisfies you.
And finally, you have to remain alert and vigilant. Changes in today’s workplace come fast and furious. Survivability means staying a little ahead of the pack. Anticipating change rather than simply reacting to it. Behind each of these steps is a complicated process of learning and skill building. In every sector, industry, company and institution, abilities such as these are essential to career success. They will help you look for work, talk to your supervisor about a raise or a promotion, know when to cut your losses and change jobs.