With the announcement of Ryan Seacrest as Kelly Ripa's new morning-show co-host, the former American Idol host now has six (yes, six!) jobs. Besides deeming him this year's "hardest working man in show biz," there's something else (almost) all of us should do: study his career strategy.
Today, every job you take makes a statement about you.
Thanks to social media, all of us have public reputations to manage. For better or worse, we're all now judged based on what's posted about us online. Especially, in our careers. Sites like LinkedIn are forcing us to evaluate and promote our personal brand as a way to catch the attention of employers and impress our peers. The better your career story, the more opportunities will come your way. This is sobering news for those who hate self-promotion and were raised to be humble. Why? Keeping your head down and doing good work is no longer enough to get promoted and ensure job security. You have to think of yourself as a business-of-one that must build and market their reputation for as long as you want to stay in business, a.k.a. stay employed.
Seacrest's jobs all share one common trait.
If you look beyond the fact Seacrest's success is rooted in the entertainment industry (which is all about self-promotion), you will also see his current jobs intentionally showcase and leverage his top workplace personas. Based on the Career Decoder test, a tool that evaluates each person's preferred way to deliver value at work, Seacrest is a Visionary, Builder, Superconnector combination. In other words, he loves to innovate, create, and promote. As the producer of three controversial reality TV shows, the host-producer of a highly rated New Year's Eve event, and the host of two talk shows, Seacrest is "in the zone" with the use of his workplace personas. When you align your preferred way to create value with the jobs you do, the career results are explosive. Think of anyone you know with an incredible amount of career success and personal satisfaction, and you'll see they're leveraging and promoting their top workplace personas on the job.
Failing to choose jobs that leverage workplace personas can set you back.
For those that can't swallow the idea of taking a page from Seacrest's career strategy playbook, let me offer you this: Failing to be intentional about the jobs you take as they relate to your workplace personas can have negative effects on your career. For example, each time you take a job that doesn't align with how you like to create value, your commitment and on-the-job engagement drops. Studies show this lowers your effectiveness and productivity, which can lead to your having to change jobs. Or, perhaps even worse, getting fired and having to explain why you failed at the job you didn't like. Anyone who has had a series of unsuccessful job experiences knows: It's a struggle it to tell a compelling career story to potential employers. And, it limits your ability to get a better job.
Knowing your personas aren't being used is half the battle.
If you're currently in a job that isn't properly leveraging your workplace personas, the solution is to proactively work with your boss to try to pivot your responsibilities so that you're truly using your best skills. From a career management perspective, the better you become at aligning your job with your workplace personas, the more professional success and satisfaction you'll have -- which can lead to some powerful benefits, such as positive performance reviews and greater opportunities for advancement.
Today, we're all required to tell good career stories. If your work history isn't aligned with your workplace personas, you should consider re-evaluating your career strategy. Better job opportunities and greater professional satisfaction will be your reward.