Who Moved My Cheese? is the title of a very popular business book written by Dr Spencer Johnson the best selling co-author of the One Minute Manager. The subtitle of Who Moved My Cheese? is An Amazing Way to Deal with Change in Your Work and Life.
Change is a given in our workplaces and at times these changes are testing. Often our first response when we perceive a change to be negative is to consider looking for another workplace, based on the principle that the grass is greener on the other side.
Leaving your workplace is only one of a range of options, and in fact may be the least productive option or last resort in terms of your career.
Paul Stevens of Worklife provides a list of ten actions which can be taken: remain in your current job; develop your current job (enrichment); seek promotion (vertical); test out options(exploration); move sideways (lateral); move down (realignment); change business section (relocation); change career field (redirection); create a new job (proposal); and finally change employer (external). Being aware of other options for career development allows you to be in control rather than allowing your circumstances to control you.
Learn the lesson of Who Moved My Cheese? Be proactive about change. Assume responsibility for your own career development. See your current job and organisation as your “classroom” and become a learner. Are there new skills you need to develop? Who can help you? Are there projects where you can contribute? How can you extend your network in the organisation?
If your take a proactive approach to your job and your career you are less likely to be derailed, sidelined or distracted, and if you do finally choose to leave your employer then you will be doing it for a good reason – your own career development.