Saturday, December 12, 2009

The Happenstance Theory of Career Planning

I guess I should start this post with a tip of the hat to longer vacations. I, like many Americans, rarely use all of the vacation time allotted, but this year I made an exception and invested three weeks to explore Bali, Burma and Thailand.

Once I got over the guilt's (that took about a week) by the time we returned, I didn't even know what day of the week it was.

Of course, some of that might have been the result of the 30+ hours of travel time, but I would rather believe that it was due to the chance to observe and participate in the unique cultures and beauty of SE Asia.

And, if you have checked out the picture here, I can tell you that the answer to the question of whether or not I ever thought I would have the chance to spend quality time with a live, 20 month old, 300 pound tiger, the answer is no, but it is something I will not soon forget.

In any case, what does all this have to do with careers and how they evolve? The answer is probably not much other than the fact had I not had the experience of losing my job some 20+ years ago, and as the result of that migrate into an experience which became ExecuNet, I am sure I would still be only fanaticizing about the chance to actually spend time with a tiger.

That said, over the years, many people have said to me that somewhere in my DNA there must have been a fair number of entrepreneurial genes in order for ExecuNet to be starting year 22 in 2010. My answer has always been that if that was true, I was certainly not aware of it, but rather it came about based on my own experience in career transition and that I just felt there had to be a better way to make the process of career management at the executive level more win-win, and ExecuNet turned out to be the answer for me.

It wasn't until I returned from vacation and was wading through my email that I noticed one from Pedro Ramirez, and Greg Skidmore who team up to do a podcast in which they interview entrepreneurs from around the area. Not sure how Pedro found me, but he did and some weeks ago I sat down with them to talk about how ExecuNet came to be and what do we do as well as the why and how of what we do.

Once I listened to the podcast, I actually thought it came out fairly well and more importantly as we got into a deeper discussion around senior level career management that there were some key learnings that might be of help to others trying to fight the current career battles.

If you want to listen, you can just click here. It runs about 30 minutes.


Anonymous said...

Welcome back, Dave. I guess we all know now where the Tiger has been lately.



Anonymous said...

Great post. As I recently can attest, networking and truly finding out what you want to do in life is true motivation. Its great that you took the time for yourself to explore other cultures and countries. I bet your creative mind was at full tilt!

Dave Opton said...

Thanks for the comment, and for sure it was! Among other things, for all the ills we have as a country (and for sure we have almost too many to count)anytime you take things for granted, travel abroad.

This is not to say that we could learn much from other countries and cultures because for sure we can and should, but even so, we have so much to be grateful for having the good fortune to live in this country.