It’s the start of a new year and job seekers, job changers and career shifters are getting twitchy. Getting organised for the job search can be a nightmare for some. The irony is that being organised doing the job is often an employer requirement. What does being organised look like? What do employers expect? What does it mean for navigating your career?
The organised person
Employable people are self-aware and aware of how others like to operate. They can describe how they organise themselves and communicate it to people. To do so, they find techniques and approaches that work for them, play to their strengths and know who to rely on and when. Here are some common characteristics and behaviours of an organised person:
- Self-motivated – taking the initiative to get organised.
- Focused – able to stay on track and manage distractions (online and offline).
- Resourceful – using limited resources creatively, saving yourself time, finding things easily and avoiding reinventing the wheel each time.
- Reliable – dependable, open, easy to do business with.
- Able to prioritise – delegating, sharing and asking for support when needed.
- Able to juggle – managing several tasks at once.
- Flexible and able to plan – so you can reorganise when things change.
In your job role, employers expect you to:
- Be productive in a way that delivers what colleagues, partners, and customers expect.
- Have personal and professional standards such as punctuality and respect for others in meeting deadlines.
- Know where and when you have got to be and make it happen – electronic diaries, productivity apps.
- Let people know where to find or contact you on any given day – your accessibility, voicemails, email responders.
- Communicate what you are doing and where people can find things – information sharing and access.
- Be aware of your time stealers, know what works for you in addressing them and get the balance right.
- Have the resilience to handle lots of tasks, prioritise them effectively and manage your workload.
- Be a self-organising learner.
Navigating your career
Complying with employers’ recruitment processes is important, although they can at times be hugely time-consuming, irritating and cumbersome. Planning your job application and interviews requires necessary discipline and attention to detail. So, don’t rule yourself out before you get a chance to rule yourself in. That doesn’t mean acting like a robot. Even mavericks benefit from discipline. An organised and disciplined mindset also matters as you navigate your career:
- Do periodic self-audits on your current capabilities, ambitions, and career direction.
- Keep on top of your career profile and your personal brand.
- Maintain and build your networks in line with your goals.
Being organised is a set of life skills. Learn how you and other people like to operate for good relationships and being productive. You only have 24 hours in a day, so be selective. We live in a short-attention, distracted world full of competing priorities. Employers expect you to be organised in the way you apply for jobs and in the way you fulfil your job role. Your lifelong learning challenge is getting things done at work and play in healthy, efficient and rewarding ways.
Currently, how do you measure up to what employers expect of an organised person?