Take Charge of Your Career

There are a lot things going on in our lives.  For me, it is thinking about graduating this year, deciding whether to change careers, or facing being forced out of a career due to the economy.  However, I have remembered that no matter what is going on in my life I am responsible for my career and the choices I have made. 

Take charge!  I am in my chosen career because I wanted to be and did what was needed to be done to get here.  Below are some lessons I had to learn to get into my chosen career:

  • Get the education and skills required for the position.  If you do not have the requirements for the position, you will not be hired.  I am not saying that all of us can be a rocket scientist even if we aspire to be.  Face it, those individuals are brilliant.  I am saying that it is never too late to learn, just go for it.  Look at me; I am pursuing my MBA 15 years after getting my bachelors.
  • Do not expect promotions will just be handed to you.  You will need to work for them.  Also, you need to ask to be promoted.  Generally, things do not happen to those who do not ask for them.  If you aspire for the top, you will have to climb the career ladder stumbling a few times taking you to the top.
  • Grasp opportunities with both hands.  If you pass by an opportunity, it might not be there again.  You could be missing out on your big break and some good career training/experience.  Every opportunity given to me, I considered it training.
  • Inventory who you know.  Talk to as many people as you can and find out what they love about their job.  Ask them about their career development and job advancement.  Find someone doing the job you aspire to have and ask them to mentor you.  If you do not know anyone, ask your family, friends, and contacts if they do.
  • Listen to the voice in your head.  Eliminate excuses and blaming others for not being in your chosen career.  If the excuse track or blame track is repeating in your mind, you have shifted responsibility for you career decisions.  Remember – you are in charge.
  • Finding the right job takes time and effort.  It does not happen overnight but if you put the time and effort, I promise you it will.  If you know where you are going, you will get there. 

As I reflect on my career, I am reminded of the choices I have made that have taken me on my path today. I was supposed to be an astronaut until I discovered I have motion sickness.  I chose to not want to spend my career sick.  I know that for every door that closed, I was the one that closed it and forced another one to open.   I would love to hear your stories.

photo credit


About Patricia Knight
Hello and welcome. My name is Patricia Knight. Thank you for taking the time to view my blog. I’m a Human Resources professional who is currently pursing an MBA at the University of Nevada-Reno. I am an analytical, detail-oriented professional who believes that collaboration and negotiation are critical for successful employee relations between leadership and employees.

5 Responses to Take Charge of Your Career

  1. Patricia, you are right on target. The first step to reaching one’s goals is to take ownership of your actions and choices. Once you do that you open yourself up to exponential growth and the sky becomes the limit. Thank your for sharing such insightful information!


  3. Ankur Rakshti says:

    Hi Patricia,
    Your post was very thought-provoking, especially as I am a recent MBA graduate (Class of 2011) from the Cornell University and am in the middle of my full-time search. I have a background in IT and am looking to break into Finance. But I have been asking myself very hard questions lately as I struggle to land interviews, and I have realized there is noone else but myself to blame if I don’t get into a career that I want and deserve.
    Do you think aspiring to become an Astronaut after doing my MBA is a bad decision? 😛
    Let me know your thoughts.


    • Thanks Ankur, I am glad you liked my post. It’s up to you to make your career your own. You look at what it takes to get there & inventory what your skills are & figure out the gaps. Just take control & do it.


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