Independence or dependence?

Sign this way that way

Not only are we at a major crossroads in our political history, we are at a major crossroads in how we work. Independence or dependence.
The old world of work isn’t coming back.

The UK referendum on 23 June 2016 provides an opportune theme to write about the big career decision that many of us face as we get older – a turning point in our careers. Should we remain dependent or become independent? This decision occurs often in our late 40s or 50s, a time when many become consultants, because they want to or have to.

5 reasons for considering independence

* It hasn’t worked out with your business partner
* Your work has dried up – younger and cheaper people are doing it
* You are sick of politics
* You are ready for a new challenge (s)
* Your industry/profession is young biased
* What reasons would you add?

Independence and dependence both have pros and cons, just as being single and married do.

Self-employment is predicted to rise to be nearly 50% by 2020. Many people will have a portfolio career – up to 5 strands of work and a mastery area essential. Competition will increase and you will need to have a higher level of qualification than today and a personal brand to stand out on-line. It is essential to think about this now or risk getting left behind.

I am curious about when Reid Hoffman’s (co-founder of LinkedIn) views about talent resourcing will happen in reality. It feels like the world is stuck between the past and the future. Change take energy and focus. Both these 2 books are worth reading:

* Reid Hoffman – The Alliance

* Reid Hoffman The start up of you

The ‘gig’ economy

The ‘gig’ economy is here with Trip Advisor style resourcing sites of specialists. Uncertainty and having to provide a pension is likely to put off the growing number of SME employers from going down the employee route.

In future, employers will have a smaller workforce of well paid in demand jobs with the sought after perks of pension, security and certainty.

Everyone else will be self-employed – a huge global flexible workforce used as and when. It makes sense and always has if you think about it, especially with labour the biggest business cost.

What do you want? Independence or dependence?

It is likely in the run up to the referendum, 111 days from today to be precise, there will be much sitting on the fence by many businesses and individuals.

Will you be one of them about your own future?

Or you could be:

* Defining your personal brand
* Investing in career capital
* Creating a personal web site
* Letting us help you market yourself

PS

There is a middle ground between dependence, either as an employee or regular associate and independence, doing your own thing by yourself. Interdependence – a symbiotic rather than parasitic formal or informal linking, a ‘win win’ for both parties, two lots of strengths, time and energy. This can be a happy middle ground for many.

6 signs independence is for you

Choice is more important than certainty
Nimbleness is more appealing than sloth
Creating your own future on your terms is appealing
Flexibility is essential and/or important to you
Even if you don’t like marketing yourself, you are open to doing so
You prefer to be proactive rather than reactive

What next?

Do you know what your transferable skills are? Download your free report ‘Personal skills audit’ and find out now:
http://careerstrategies.co.uk/changingcareersreport/

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2020 skills self-assessment

Thinking outside the box

In a fast changing world, different skills are needed compared with the past. These are the top 10 skills needed for 2020.

1. Complex problem solving
2. Critical thinking
3. Creativity
4. People management
5. Coordinating with others
6. Emotional intelligence
7. Judgement and decision making
8. Service orientation
9. Negotiation
10. Cognitive flexibility

Source: Future of jobs report, World Economic Forum 11 January 2016

According to the Future of jobs report by the World Economic Forum, more than a third of the desired core skills sets of most occupations will be compromised of skills that are not yet considered crucial to the job today.

How would you rate your competency on each of these 10 skills out of 100%?

What are your learning objectives?

S.M.A.R.T. Learning and development objectives

1

2

3

How can we support you?

Get in touch:

Contact us

Find out your network’s view of your skills – download our free report:
Free Energise report

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Funke Abimbola Guest blog – the sequel part 2

Funke Abimbola

This is a 2 part sequel guest blog, an update to the guest blogs Funke did for us in 2015. In part 1 Funke shared what has changed and how the change came about and in this post, part 2, she shares the significance of the change and what next for 2016.

Funke is a practising solicitor and multi award-winning lawyer and diversity campaigner. She joined Roche as Managing Counsel in January 2012, leading the legal team supporting Roche’s pharmaceutical operations in the UK, Ireland, Malta and Gibraltar and was also appointed as Data Protection Officer for the UK. She was promoted to General Counsel & Company Secretary in December 2015. Her career began in private practice before moving in-house. Outside of her role at Roche, Funke undertakes a lot of work to support diversity & inclusion in society as a whole and within the legal profession in particular, initiating and driving through a range of ground-breaking diversity initiatives. She has received national and European recognition for her diversity work, all of which is carried out in her spare time on voluntary basis.

Part 1 of this guest blog in case you missed it:

Sequel guest blog part 1

What is the significance of this change for you?

The changes were all significant to me as they showed once again that there is no substitute for hard work, determination and maintaining your focus, whatever the challenges. Tenacity always pays off in the end. I feel incredibly privileged to be making such an impact across all roles within my portfolio career.

What next for you in 2016?

I am focusing on developing my leadership even further and have an exceptional executive coach who is helping both me and my team to exceed our goals. Various members of my team have been promoted to new roles and I look forward to supporting the whole team’s development as we make our 2016 vision a reality.

Outside of work, I will continue to build upon last year’s diversity work across several diversity strands, including gender, and to broaden my influence into broader CSR initiatives. I already have 15 speaking engagements booked for 2016, including another engagement at the BBC and speaking at the House of Lords.

I was recently appointed as a Patron for Asian Voice’s Charity Awards (more details can be found at http://asianvoicecharityawards.com/) and look forward to supporting this new awards programme designed to reward those charities with a big vision, seeking to solve the most pressing social issues of our time (both in Britain and globally).

I am hoping to speak to over 2,000 school children this year, impacting positively on their lives by showing them what is possible with hard work and determination. As the mother of a teenage son, I find working with school children incredibly rewarding and absolutely fundamental: children really are the future and should be given every opportunity to maximise their potential. For example, I am speaking at an event in March called “The Art of Diversity”, a nationwide competition for children aged 4-19 to create a piece of art showing what diversity means to them (see https://theartofdiversity.communisis.com/). My son has entered the competition and I look forward to being inspired by the children’s vision of what diversity means.

The list of what I hope to achieve during 2016 is endless but above all, I want to be able to look back on this year and feel proud of what my team and I have achieved, both within and outside work.

Read Funke’s original guest blogs from 2015:

Part 1
Original guest blog part 1

Part 2
Original guest blog part 2

What transferable skills do you possess that you could leverage in new and different ways? Download your FREE report now:
Changing careers report

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Funke Abimbola Guest blog – the sequel part 1

Funke Abimbola
In this 2 part guest blog, in part 1 Funke shares what has changed and how the change came about and the part 2, she shares the significance of the change and what next for 2016. This is part 1.

Funke is a practising solicitor and multi award-winning lawyer and diversity campaigner. She joined Roche as Managing Counsel in January 2012, leading the legal team supporting Roche’s pharmaceutical operations in the UK, Ireland, Malta and Gibraltar and was also appointed as Data Protection Officer for the UK. She was promoted to General Counsel & Company Secretary in December 2015. Her career began in private practice before moving in-house. Outside of her role at Roche, Funke undertakes a lot of work to support diversity & inclusion in society as a whole and within the legal profession in particular, initiating and driving through a range of ground-breaking diversity initiatives. She has received national and European recognition for her diversity work, all of which is carried out in her spare time on a voluntary basis.

What has changed?

2015 was a ground-breaking year for me both in terms of my legal work at Roche and in terms of building upon the reach and impact of my voluntary diversity work.

With regards diversity, I started the year focusing on gender diversity – by the end of the year, as well as gender, I was also doing significant amounts of work around social mobility issues and in relation to ethnicity. Together with award winning journalist, Jon Robins, and Byfield Consultancy (a leading legal PR firm), I published a report on social mobility issues across the whole legal profession called “Opening up or shutting out” (http://www.byfieldconsultancy.com/wp-content/uploads/Opening-up-or-shutting-out_Social-mobility-in-the-legal-profession.pdf).

The report was very well received, resulting in an exclusive for “The Times” and several opportunities to write further articles for “The Times” and other leading publications. The visibility and success of this report has led to many other opportunities for me – for example, a roundtable discussion on social mobility for “The Law Society Gazette” http://www.lawgazette.co.uk/people/roundtable-social-mobility/5052584.fullarticle and me being a panellist at the 2015 PRIME conference, together with Sir Terry Leahy (former CEO of Tesco), the BBC’s Mishal Husain, Louise Ashley (the author of the Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission’s June 2015 report, “Non-educational barriers to the elite professions evaluation”, https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/non-educational-barriers-to-the-elite-professions-evaluation) and ITV’s Barry Matthews. Approximately 200 law firm attendees were present. The visibility and impact of this event has, in turn, lead to additional opportunities for me to extend my diversity work even further in 2016.

Throughout 2015, I received an unprecedented number of speaking requests. In terms of sheer numbers, I spoke to audiences approaching 1,500 solicitors and other professionals including speaking at the BBC, the Law Society 3 times and at the 30% Club. Speaking engagements to school children was also very active last year – I spoke to almost 1,200 school children in 2015.

In terms of my legal career, I started 2015 as Managing Counsel for the UK & Ireland, leading the legal team supporting Roche’s pharmaceutical business in the UK, Ireland, Malta and Gibraltar. By the end of 2015, I had been promoted to General Counsel & Company Secretary. I now lead a mixture of both lawyers and corporate compliance professionals and, as UK Corporate Compliance Officer, I have additional responsibilities in driving the site-wide corporate compliance agenda for the Roche UK pharmaceutical business. I lead the UK Corporate Compliance senior leadership team and am also a member of the UK Governance senior leadership team. So 2015 was an eventful year to say the least!

How did any change come about?

The changes came about due to my increased visibility, impact, hard work, determination and commitment to developing myself and my team. Despite a number of set-backs and challenges throughout the year, I continued to focus on my goals and remained tenacious and determined throughout. I networked extensively, both within Roche and outside Roche. I was constantly on the lookout for opportunities both for myself and for my team and encouraged my team members to make the most of every opportunity and to see challenges as opportunities for growth and development.

My work was recognised through a series of awards programmes last year and I was deeply honoured to win 4 awards last year – Career Woman of the Year (Women4Africa Awards), Positive Role Model Award for Gender (National Diversity Awards), Outstanding Woman in Professional Services (Precious Awards) and Inspiring Member of the Year (Inclusive Networks Awards). I was also recognised by Brummells’ magazine as being one of the UK’s top 30 women champions of diversity impacting on the City of London. By the end of 2015, I had been appointed as a Fellow of the Royal Society of the Royal Society of Arts for enriching society through ideas and action!

Read Funke’s original guest blogs from 2015:

Part 1
https://liberateyourtalent.wordpress.com/2015/05/29/funke-abimbola-guest-blog-1/

Part 2
https://liberateyourtalent.wordpress.com/2015/08/27/guest-blog-funke-abimbola-2/

What transferable skills do you possess that you could leverage in new and different ways? Download your FREE report now:
Changing careers report

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Vanessa Vallely guest blog part 2

Photo©John Cassidy The Headshot Guy® www.theheadshotguy.co.uk 07768 401009

Photo©John Cassidy The Headshot Guy®
http://www.theheadshotguy.co.uk
07768 401009

This is a 2 part guest blog by Vanessa Vallely. This is part 2 of 2.

Vanessa Vallely is the founder of leading women’s network, job board and web site WeAreTheCity and WeAreTheCity jobs. She also co-founded the UK wide diversity network The Network of Networks (TNON). Vanessa had an extensive 25 year career in banking and finance and is the winner of numerous awards.

In case you missed it, here is part 1:
https://liberateyourtalent.wordpress.com/2016/01/09/vanessa-vallely-guest-blog-part-1/

The rest of this blog is in Vanessa’s own words:

What are the challenges of having a portfolio career?
Obviously a lot of the work I do isn’t paid, so I need to balance my time in terms of what I do that pays the bills versus what I do because I am passionate about it. Other than that, there are no down sides at all.

Who or what helps you to manage your portfolio career?
My PA, I couldn’t live without her! She also challenges me to ensure that my time is balanced across my many different projects and ensures that I am not neglecting any of my commitment.

How do you approach marketing your portfolio career?
I don’t tend to market my career as one particular activity. It is made up of lots of different component parts, all of which compliment each other. A lot of my speaking work comes in via word of mouth. My charity positions tend to be for 2-3 year periods so they are fairly fixed. In terms of WeAreTheCity, my core business, this is actively marketed, as it is a business therefore needs the right level of marketing in order for it to be successful. Other than that I attribute the opportunities I am presented with through my networking activities and my social media presence (e.g. Twitter, LinkedIn etc).

What advice would you give to someone considering a portfolio career?
To plan what they want to do before actually biting the bullet. To ensure that have the network and connections to support their aspirations. To make sure there is a balance in terms of commercial and voluntary activities.

What benefits do portfolio careers bring specifically to women and mothers, rather than to men?
I don’t see the difference. I expect if I still had very young children, the flexibility of a portfolio career may be of use, however I don’t see why it should be any different for either gender.

What next?
Visit Vanessa’s web site:
http://www.vanessavallely.com/

What transferable skills do you possess that could open up new avenues e.g. a second career or business? Download your FREE report now:
http://careerstrategies.co.uk/changingcareersreport/

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Vanessa Vallely guest blog part 1

Photo©John Cassidy The Headshot Guy® www.theheadshotguy.co.uk 07768 401009

Photo©John Cassidy The Headshot Guy®
http://www.theheadshotguy.co.uk
07768 401009

This is a 2 part guest blog by Vanessa Vallely. This is part 1 of 2.

Vanessa Vallely is the founder of leading women’s network, job board and web site WeAreTheCity and WeAreTheCity jobs. She also co-founded the UK wide diversity network The Network of Networks (TNON). Vanessa had an extensive 25 year career in banking and finance and is the winner of numerous awards.

The rest of this blog is in Vanessa’s own words:

What are the components of your portfolio career e.g. study, paid freelance work, part time job, volunteering etc.)?
Since leaving my corporate job in 2012, I have been building my portfolio career. This consists of running 2 businesses both here and in India, speaking at corporates and schools and sitting on charity boards. I also had a 3 year stint as a school governor at a local primary school.

How did your portfolio career come about?
I felt I wanted to do more than just one job. I also felt an inherent need to start giving back to my community and to apply my skills to a multitude of things.

How has your portfolio career changed over time?
I feel that one opportunity has led to others. For example, my first charity board position lead to a connection that led to the next. My experience on that charity board made it easier for me to transition on to the next. I evolved from my school governor position to actually working in schools as part of Future First & Inspiring the future.

When people ask you ‘what do you do?’ – what do you reply?
I wear many hats. Business, Community and charity. I have a portfolio career.

To what extent did your portfolio career happen by chance/luck and to what extent was it planned?
I always knew I wanted to do a variety of things when I eventually left my corporate role. I knew what I wanted to do, however the opportunities really came when I started to invest time in building my network.

What do you most love about having a portfolio career?
I like the variety more than anything. I can go from running my business to presenting to teenagers at a school. On another day, I can be contributing towards a charity’s strategy to travelling to India to volunteer. It is a dream to have a portfolio career as I get to choose what I get involved in and I feel like I am contributing in both business and to the community. I just wish I had more time to get involved in all the projects that come my way.

What next?

Visit Vanessa’s web site:
http://www.vanessavallely.com/

What transferable skills do you possess that could open up new avenues e.g. a second career or business? Download your FREE report now:
http://careerstrategies.co.uk/changingcareersreport/

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Simon Strong’s portfolio career 6 of 6

Illustration of a juggler

This is the fifth in a series of 6 blog posts by Simon Strong about his portfolio career. Reading how people have created their own portfolio career can be useful to inspire you to create one yourself.

In case you missed them, here are parts 1, 2, 3, 4 & 5

Here is part 1:
https://liberateyourtalent.wordpress.com/2015/04/11/simon-strongs-portfolio-career-1/

Here is part 2:
https://liberateyourtalent.wordpress.com/2015/04/16/simon-strongs-portfolio-career-2/

Here is part 3:
https://liberateyourtalent.wordpress.com/2015/05/04/simon-strongs-portfolio-career-3/

Here is Part 4:
https://liberateyourtalent.wordpress.com/2015/05/22/simon-strongs-portfolio-career-4/

Here is part 5
https://liberateyourtalent.wordpress.com/2015/10/19/simon-strongs-portfolio-career-5-of-6/

The rest of this blog is in Simon’s own words.

How do you approach marketing your portfolio career?
I’d really like to take advice on that one! I’ve come to realise that marketing and branding consultants suck at marketing themselves.

The café is much easier because I have a product and a place.

What if any, is the personal brand used for your portfolio career?
Human Zoo works nicely across different facets of my work. But I’ve found that it’s personal reputation that seems to be what unlocks the opportunities for me. Human Zoo is more for me than for clients. I suppose it fulfils the convention of being a company name. Maybe when some of the innovation projects take off it’ll serve a more important role.

What advice would you give to someone considering a portfolio career?
Good Lord! I’m not sure anyone should take advice from me! I’m happy to help people to create products, services, insights, culture, possible futures and even businesses. But I wouldn’t dare suggest anyone listen to advice I’d have to offer. Except that I suspect that whatever it is that you are thinking – it’s probably at least partially right.

I’m also a big fan of the minimum viable product idea – what is the least you can do to get your idea working. We’ve all done it – spent a fortune on a website, business cards, and marketing collateral in order to be ‘professional’. It’s a lot of wasted money for nothing. It could all have been done for free (a simple off-the-peg website, simple text only business cards etc.). For the most part all that stuff is just an expensive distraction (in terms of finance, energy and time) from doing the actual work.

When I opened the café I had an espresso machine. I could make coffee and tea. The espresso machine ran on bottled water, and I washed up in a bucket. The entire set up was temporary. It cost as little as I could get away with. But people loved it – rustic charm I called it! And they adored watching and being a part of this little business – watching it, and me, grow. My biggest insight from this is that my customers aren’t paying for the coffee I’ve just served – they are paying for me to be there tomorrow – they are investing in tomorrow’s cup of coffee!

Anything else you want to add?
It seems to me that the most secure occupation is the one you create for yourself. It’s unlikely you’ll find yourself such a terrible employee that you’ll fire yourself – I hope you’d be forgiving enough to give yourself another chance…!

This was the last in a 6 part guest blog series by Simon Strong.

View Simon Strong’s LinkedIn profile:
http://https//uk.linkedin.com/in/simonstrong

View the Human Zoo web site:
http://www.humanzoo.biz/

What could your portfolio career be made up of? Find out what your transferable skills are by downloading our free report:
http://careerstrategies.co.uk/changingcareersreport/

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