What is my best alternative to move my career in an optimal direction: using Option Solving

A client was recently talking about his son’s career woes and was wondering about the best advice he could offer him. We both agreed that it would be best for him to find his own way, although giving him decent advice on how best to find his way was worthwhile to pursue.  That’s where option solving came in handy once more, although it would need a more unusual approach. This is because his son’s career field of view was somewhat open and therefore required extra steps to discern his son’s likely optimal way forward. So we decided to take the first step on his son’s behalf, to create an interest point, and then involve his son from there.

Our first step was to clarify his general career track before deciding how best to approach that career track. Hence we produced a question that looked like this: “What is my best alternative to move my career in an optimal direction; considering I need to 1) be somewhat flexible relative to my experience, 2) find a likely enlightened leadership segment, 3) discern a career that matches my talents-expertise, and 4) cannot relocate for the time being?” These turned out to be the son’s four key considerations, despite several others, so his decision outcome will make final possibilities that much easier to handle.

We then determined two yin and yang “bookends” as outlier possibilities. These would aid focusing his son’s intuitive, decision-making mind on his most realistic options. Bookends such as these are vital for preventing people’s fertile intuitive minds from wandering and losing focus. We are mostly unaware of how powerfully valuable but foot-loose our intuition can be unless properly focused.   

After due consideration our proposed two bookends turned out to be: “Let it happen when it will,” although time was not on his son’s side, and “Engage a career counselor,” where the expense may be out of range: so both of which were his least likely options for the reasons given. Even so, such bookends would provide his intuitive mind the challenge it needed to kick-start the most creative options and help draw-out his son’s most realistic one – see our Latest Worked Example.

It was then up to us to produce at least five reasonable options, so as to stretch his son’s range of options as much as possible. In fact, we came up with a sixth option after further thought, too, which you can review in our worked example. Your editor was intrigued by all the options, right off the bat, so it was going to be interesting to see which career channel his friend’s son picks.

Once he has picked that channel, where he should absolutely follow his first major instincts, he can then utilize Peeling the Onion to determine how best to pursue that career channel. It may then be necessary for him to Peel the Onion a even another layer to refine his “approach strategy”: i.e. how to open the right doors within that career channel.

But first his son had to contemplate our initial OS effort, since he may wish to adjust it. Then he would need to set some time aside for emotional distancing – a form of objective thinking – before making his choice…perhaps after 2 hours, later that day, or first thing the following morning. Even so, once he has picked that channel, he should stick with it, despite the temptation to second guess himself: second guessing your intuition is not a wise thing to do, even though that channel may have its challenges. Once he’s made his initial selection, then he can go to step 2 – Peeling the Onion – with our assist, to determine an optimum strategy for pursuing that channel.

If you have an example of your own, please share it with this blogger, through the COMMENTS area.  Thanks Option Solving. (NOTE: Next posting will be in two week’s time: “Peeling the Onion: What is my best alternative for moving my career in an optimal direction- Option (?)?” Let’s have your COMMENTS or go to peter@ileadershipsolutions.com to connect with the blogger. Also consider buying the book: “Smart Decisions: Goodbye Problems, Hello Options” through amazon.com)


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