Career conundrums: opportunity or angst-provoking missteps?

Go up and never stop.jpg
 

Things so often happen in synchronicity. Coincidences that feel like there are vibes in the air that people are picking up, you know? 

Like this week. I had two clients who reached out to me with career conundrums to solve. Well, actually the first one didn't know it was a situation that required solving. Let me explain. 

Let's call her Maria. She is a CEO with about 10 years C-suite experience. A formidable change agent, her last few gigs were all about radical transformation, serious upheaval. And in the last role she was bullied by a group of established leaders who resented change. They slandered my client. Now her job search is taking longer than previously because their slander was a public piece that pops up if you search her name. Maria is applying to a few roles that truly do not fit her background and this last one didn't fit her brand, either. I cannot tell you much about the role, for confidentiality reasons, but it led me to ask my client "Would this job make your heart happy?" Thankfully she let that one go.

And the second client, curiously also a woman, a senior Human Resource professional, was trying to evaluate whether or not she should consider proceeding to round two of the interview process. Great job, great pay, good benefits, but from her perspective, distressing environment. 

Again, without going into confidential details, the environment was one that went against a strong value she holds. Her heart would not only NOT be happy, it would HURT, daily, in this environment (admittedly, I, too, would have trouble there). 

I do not believe in "giving advice." Not to clients, and not to family, either. But, I don't mind playing devil's advocate, asking questions so that confusion lessens and the path is cleared.

Both clients have let the "opportunity" go. Sometimes opportunities are dead end paths; not every opportunity is positive and to be seized. Discernment is critical in our personal lives as well as in our professional lives. As long as the trajectory feels "up," from many perspectives, the path might just be the right one.