Message from the Chair
Summertime . . . and the livin’ is easy… or at least easier.
Schools out for summer and the general pace of life – personal and professional – eases a little. Vacation periods are at their highest and the opportunities to rest and recharge are critical for all of us.
This summer, I hope that you’ll find some downtime to relax a little and hopefully pause and reflect upon yourself and the career you’re building within our industry. The midyear is a perfect time to introspect, to look back, but also to look ahead at your options and opportunities in the coming months and years.
The need to recharge your batteries is real and necessary. The summer gives you an opportunity to reignite your enthusiasm for the work that you do. To you as an individual, that means jumping out of bed and looking forward to your work day. To your employer, that’s called engagement!
Forbes defines engagement as: “the emotional commitment the employee has to the organization and its goals.” Forbes goes further to state that, “this emotional commitment means engaged employees actually care about their work and their company.”
An employee can be satisfied enough to stay in a job but without caring enough to put forth discretionary effort to help the company succeed (beyond his or her personal gain, that is).
Therefore, caring about the work and how it supports the company is what distinguishes an engaged employee from a merely satisfied one.
Thinking back to what personally drove my engagement at work, particularly earlier on in my career, I realize that it was a combination of wanting to do well and wanting to feel proficient in my job. I was also driven by the opportunity to do a variety of things and to take on new challenging roles. That desire was not taught, but came from within.
How satisfied I was about my work was directly related to my own sense of accomplishment. While recognition of a job well done from co-workers, clients, of those above was always welcome – it was my own opinion that mattered the most.
I figured out early on that the ability to try new and different things – and to stay engaged in my work – was in my control. Without even changing jobs, I often found there were many opportunities to take on new challenges, to learn and to experience new things. You can talk to your boss or employer about the various opportunities within your organization that can help you expand your role. These may include (but are not limited to) job shadowing, partnering with others, working on a special project, doing a rotation or secondment.
To help you take control of your work and your career, I encourage you to check out the great resources on the Institute’s mycareer site. You will find tools that can guide you, and give you the right framework and the right language to help you have meaningful conversations with your employer about your engagement at work and the next steps in your career.
In a fast changing industry, you need to be regularly looking for chances to experience, to adopt, to learn, and to improve yourself. Not only will your employer notice, but you will undoubtedly experience greater job satisfaction. Everyone wins, including the industry as a whole.
Engaged employees are vitally important to each of your respective organizations. And engaged members are vitally important to the CIP Society. Engagement with the CIP Society can mean a variety of things, including attending one of the webinars in the ADVANTAGE Live webinar series, reading and sharing the latest trends paper, or attending a local institute or chapter social event.
For many of CIP Society members, engagement in the CIP Society means volunteering with the Institute – in capacities ranging from council member to instructor to Career Connections Ambassador. In fact, the Institute wouldn’t be what it is without the generosity of time and effort provided by 1,500 volunteers across the country! In this issue, three volunteers tell us what they give, and what they get back in return, at the Institute. If you are passionate about the industry and want to learn more about how you can volunteer with the Institute, please get in touch with your local institute or chapter.
Engagement is more than just a buzz word. Those who are engaged do more and care more about their organizations and about the industry. This summer, enjoy your downtime and get energized for a fulfilling year ahead!
Mike Kosturik, BA, FCIP
Chair, National CIP Society