Shadow by Being in Someone else’s Shoes For Career

When people are going through the career discovery process, maybe they’re thinking about going back to school, or whatever, so often, they’re really focused on, kind of doing the research on their own.

Trying to Make a Career Decision While In A Silo

Do you know what I’ve noticed about careers, and people who are trying to make career decisions? They do so in a silo without actually involving somebody in it. Oh my gosh, what does that mean? That’s the most confusing thing I’ve ever said.

Hello, my name is Christopher Lawrence, and I am with A life leadership and business coaching firm. My specialty happens to be in motivation, career discovery, and really just good old-fashioned getting you moving again. So, here’s what I noticed about career, when people are going through the career discovery process, maybe they’re thinking about going back to school, or whatever, so often, they’re really focused on kind of doing the research on their own, but they’re not actually involving anybody else in it.

Some Things To Consider When Looking for A New Career

So, I wanted to give you a couple of really quick tips about if you are out there looking for a new career, what, you know, what are a couple of things that you should be considering. The first is, to get out from behind your computer. So, go do the research online first, because it’s the easiest place. But you need to know, what the role looks like? So, as you start to narrow it down, you know, maybe you decide that you wanna be a business analyst or project manager, or a landscaper or a nurse, go spend some time with somebody who is actually in the role. Go shadow them doing their job, and at the very least, sit down and find out from them, how they spend their day.

Remember, when people talk about their careers, they’ll talk about all of the amazing things or all of the really crappy things. And they talk about the anomalies, but they don’t actually talk about what they do every day. That is what the job is. I don’t care if you call yourself a lawyer, if you don’t like reading long documents, you might not be a good lawyer, or while you might be a good lawyer, you might not enjoy being a lawyer. Because a lot of lawyers, that’s how they spend their time. Now, of course, there are other branches of law, that do different things, and that kind of thing. But you know, I’m just using that as an example.

The Tasks Make The Job

So the idea is, is that, you know, find out what they spend 80% of their day doing either through questioning them about it, or ideally shadowing them and seeing what they, how they actually spend their time. Because at the end of the day, it might be a fancy name, title or salary, the truth is, is that, it’s the tasks that make the job. You might write that down. The tasks make the job. That’s what a job is. It’s made up of tasks. It’s not made up of a title or your salary. I’m not saying title and salary aren’t important. What I’m saying is, they don’t have staying power, like understanding what the tasks are. If let’s say you know, your title was something really fancy, like CEO, you know, you’re the Chief Executive Officer of an organization. But the whole time you sat there, and you were, you know, just counting money, it doesn’t matter what the title is, if you don’t like the job.

There are some jobs that are even, you know, that can be really complex, too. So if you’re looking at something, let’s, let’s say, a project manager or business analyst, you know, maybe you’re looking at doing one of those jobs, well, you know, the thing is, is that depending on the organization that you’re looking at, the size of it, the kind of work they do, the industry, the level that you’re going in at. So, junior, intermediate or senior, you know, being a business analyst or project manager, it’s, let me get to the edges of the screen here. And you know, it’s this big, right? Like, there are so many different ways of expressing it. Certainly, a Junior Project Manager would have different tasks than a Senior Project Manager. This is why by the way, some people when they get promoted, they end up liking their job less, then less than they did when they were more junior because they like or vice versa. Sometimes they like the more senior role less than, or more than the junior role. And, you know, people think, it has to do with status and everything else, but actually, it has to do with the tasks it has. That’s one of the four factors, right? So, we look at tasks, value systems, purpose and your willingness. But today, we’re talking about tasks.

It’s The Tasks That Matter

And, so it’s like, you know, people go from, you know, being in this, you know, great customer service job that they love, and now they’re a team lead, and all of a sudden they hate it, and it’s like, that they feel away about letting it go, because of status or whatever. And the truth is that, it’s the tasks that matter, because that’s what the job is. Of course, there are other considerations, but from the perspective of what we’re talking about today, is tasks. So, you might expand you know, as a, you know, project manager or business analyst, or you know, one of these roles that have a, you know, these jobs that have a title, that’s really diverse when you get into the workforce, you might actually, you know, spend time with three or four people in different, you know, with that title, in different professions, organizations, companies, you know, all levels of seniority, to find out what they actually spend their time doing.

That’s my two cents on this topic folks. You can find me at And I’d love to hear from you, answer your questions. Tell me below about a role that you took, that you thought was something that it wasn’t. For me, it was business analysis, by the way. I took a role as a business analyst, and I thought it was something and it wasn’t. And that was mostly actually, because the organization I went into, in that role. So, look past the job title, spend some time shadowing, or at least interviewing people in those roles, and ask them what they do. What is 80% of your day look like? What do you spend your time doing? And if they don’t include meetings, they’re probably lying . Okay, talk to you later. Bye.

Here’s my career story!

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