Careers are a jungle gym not a ladder

“Careers are a jungle gym, not a ladder.”

—Sheryl Sandberg, CEO of Facebook

Image of a jungle gym

Image from Indiamart

To what degree does your company or organization offer a well-defined career path?

Prior to entering the working world, many of us in the Baby Boomer generation experienced an educational system that was very linear and predictable. This approach won’t work for our 21st century workforce, and thankfully, things are changing.

For all of us, especially members of our younger generations, there will likely be far more zig-zagging, climbing, and leaping due to the exponential nature of change occurring in our world. Continuous learning of new and diverse skills will be an absolute necessity for motivated and hard-working people to reach the top levels in their chosen fields.

EXERCISE:

How can you, your colleagues and perhaps most importantly, your children and other young people be better prepared and engaged in navigating the jungle gyms of their current and future vocational playgrounds?

Education today

“Education today, more than ever before, must see clearly the dual objectives: Educating for living, and education for making a living.”

—James Mason Wood, 19th Century English Zoologist

Recall the days you got your school report card. What subjects did you study, and how did you do? To what degree did your studies prepare you for life?

Take a moment to look at your career-related studies and perhaps your performance review process for your current work or vocational efforts. How are you doing in these areas? How much do these efforts help you live your life?

What has your educational journey – beyond the focus on career development and making a living – looked like over the years? Who were your teachers, and what grades would you give yourself in the domains outside of work?

EXERCISE:

Give yourself a grad for each of the following subjects in your life – and feel free to add a few more “electives” to pursue your own advanced degree in living:

Health _______ Relationships _______
Emotional Intelligence _______ Fun _______
Adventure _______ Continuous Learning _______
Community Involvement _______ Faith/spirituality/Religion _______
Joy _______ Meaning/Purpose _______

Where can and will you focus your educational efforts in living today and in the future to get a “PhD in Thee”?