Career Key

Author: Career Key's President and CEO, Juliet Wehr Jones, GCDF, J.D.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Family Loyalty vs. Career: It’s not just for The Godfather

Keeping your priorities straight, even in a recession, is an important part of being a Career Free Agent. Your long term happiness and job satisfaction are at stake. Tips for being loyal to yourself and your family are part 5 of my 6 part series on The Free Agent Outlook on Work.

Loyalty is such an unused and forgotten words these days. It seems counter intuitive and impractical to think about putting yourself and your family before your job in a recession. But if you truly consider your daily routine and your long-term sanity, you’ll see how this makes sense. Whether your “family” is just you and close friends or two kids, a spouse and a dog – the loyalty principle holds true.
  • Know what is important to you and what you value – and protect and nurture them. If you need to write your own eulogy to figure this out – do it. Hint: relationships are probably first. Not sure if your current career conflicts with your values or your personality? Learn more about yourself and how that impacts career choice.
  • Don’t wait until there is a crisis – a job loss, a divorce, a health problem; maintain your relationships (professional, personal) in good times.
  • Follow the ACIP model of decision-making when you need to make a tough call that you won’t regret. Do you need to find another job to avoid an unethical boss – but you’re worried about the financial consequences? Do you need to quit your job ASAP because it’s so stressful that you have physical symptoms – yet your job options elsewhere are slim?
  • Have a life outside of work. Develop personal relationships and satisfy your interests in activities unrelated to your job. Heard of “diversification”? It’s not just for investments. That way, if one part of your life suffers a blow you have another part to rely on.
Still to come, the 6th and final Free Agent Principle: Think “Right” Thoughts. And no, it will not involve stimulants (except a fancy caffeinated beverage, maybe).

For the previous posts for this 6 part series see:
The 6 Principles of the Free Agent Worker
Principle #1: Know and Strengthen Your Marketable Skills
Principle #2: Stay Mobile
Principle #3: Watch Your Company and Industry
Principle #4: Do Your Job Well

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