The seven deadly sins of career management were delineated by Kathleen Grace, founder of Grace Consulting Services, a professional services firm specializing in executive assessment, executive coaching and strategic succession planning, at the recent Forum for Women in Accounting, presented by The Advisory Board and Crosley + Company.

They are
Sin No. 1:  Wanting to be liked vs. respected
Sin No. 2: Failure to take risks early and often
Sin No. 3: Uncomfortable or unskilled in dealing with conflict
Sin No. 4: Settling for recognition instead of holding out for a reward
Sin No. 5: Unskilled at ‘bragging’
Sin No. 6: Failing to achieve a balance between team-play and self-advocacy
Sin No. 7: Lack of focus

There has always been a focus on career advancement, but in some ways it might have been easier and more predictable years ago when the general rule was make it as firm partner in a specified number of years or get out. Now, especially with the younger generations, the career progression is much more varied, and there is less of a concern about leaving a firm if it will further a career or a desired lifestyle. And just as much as firms are increasingly focusing on practice development and management, more and more professionals at these firms are actively focusing on their career development and management.
Perhaps that is why I find the recital of the seven deadly sins so fascinating. Although committing less of these sins would appear to help an individual’s value and leverage at a firm, they would also make it easier by utilizing those career management skills they have perfected to move to another firm.

There will be increasing attention to career management, especially by younger generations, beginning with education and then application and utilization at their firm. If you think about it, now there are coaches and mentors actively acting as consultants to these professionals in this regard.

There also is a great deal on career management on the Web for these professionals to access. For example, check out Our Take: Active Job Search Techniques. Career Management, Career Management in a Post-Enron World, Hire Aspirations. And I wouldn’t be surprised if professionals at your firm already read the WebCPA write-up by my colleague, Liz Gold, who attended the Forum for Women in Accounting, that offers tips on how those professionals can avoid committing those seven deadly sins in the future.

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