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How to deal with a mid-career slump

Published on Saturday, 15 Oct 2016

Most mid-career slumps occur when you have reached a point that shows little or no sign of progression. Often, people in this situation are highly valued by their employer because they perform well in their current job. However, they may feel their career has become static as a result of not having the opportunity to take on additional duties or develop new skills.

So how can you revitalise your career if you find yourself in such a slump? Whether you wish to stay with your current employer, or your slump is so dramatic it requires a change of job or industry, you can expand your skill set and “map” your career by following several steps.

First, write down your current job title, salary and benefits, key responsibilities, existing skills, future prospects and potential for skill development. Then identify at least five goals and a date by which to achieve them.

The next step is to create a detailed action plan determining the objectives and skills you want to achieve. Finally, do research into the range of roles available and find the best one for you and your career progression.

In the face of a mid-career slump, many people think training or studying is their answer, but there’s a time and place for an MBA qualification. The expansion of your skill set must coincide with practical experience if your career is to benefit.

We see countless examples of candidates who complete an MBA and assume they will automatically receive a job offer or an increase in their salary. Certainly there are some cases where this happens, but there are far more examples where it doesn’t.

The best time for an MBA is when you have gained solid experience and become an accomplished professional, as you will have the experience to prepare yourself for an executive role. An MBA shows you are not only commercially minded, but a self-starter and an achiever who is prepared to work hard for promotion.

This article appeared in the Classified Post print edition as Dump the slump.

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