be comfortable with being uncomfortable

by Bola Anjorin-Agbaje | December 22, 2020

be comfortable with being uncomfortable

by: a very uncomfortable recruiter

What does it mean to be comfortable? ‘Comfortable’ is the idea that we are at ease and we are content. In most aspects of life, we all want that. We love comfortable people and we like knowing our day will have a semblance of the previous day and the day before. Wanting ‘comfortable’ is all fine and dandy but not in all aspects of your life; this recruiter is here to tell you that your career requires you to be uncomfortable!

What do I mean by uncomfortable? I would love to use myself as an example. I left college like a deer caught in the headlights, as many students do, with the expectation that I would go into law but unsure of that path. I somehow fell into a job in sales, RECRUITMENT of all things! I got a job at a global recruitment firm – the “Big Mac” of sales and recruitment, and for almost 4 years focused on one product surrounded by basically the same group of coworkers for the entirety of my time there. More specifically, I recruited for the Microsoft Dynamics ERP system, helping place candidates full time and boy, was I comfortable. There is an ease to seeing the same people and talking with the same clientele and candidates every day. It’s like the Cheers Theme Song: “I want to be where everybody knows my name and they’re always glad I came”.

At its core, being a recruiter means you end up giving a lot of career advice and sharing in people’s lives. I always told my candidates to make sure they are continuously growing and making changes that impact how they wake up every morning, and to most importantly be excited about that change. However, I quickly realized I hadn’t been following my own advice. In fact, not only was I not actively seeking change, but I was also sitting with my chips in my hand on a couch of career comfort, which happens to people in the workforce all the time.

Here are some questions you start with to throw that old couch away:

  1. Define your career as it stands. When was the last time you asked for a promotion or even a defined promotion target?
  2. Do you have a mentor/someone you look up to that has achieved the apex of their career path? If not, get started finding them.
  3.  If you have that mentor, when was the last time you checked in with them and reflected on yourself? Figure out whether your path is on an upward trajectory or a floppy slope.
  4.  When was the last time you got excited about a new technology or new way of doing your work? If the answer is sometime in the distant past, do something to change that.

Needless to say, I checked in and it was negative on all accounts. So, I made a switch and moved to taking a role with a startup company, NerdRabbit, a ReluTech Company and a leading AWS Cloud Partner where I am doing not just recruitment, but also technical sales of a product I previously had no clue about: THE CLOUD. What is this phenomenon that has taken the tech world by storm in the last decade? Cloud computing as I am now learning is “the delivery of computing services—including servers, storage, databases, networking, software, analytics, and intelligence—over the Internet (“the cloud”) to offer faster innovation, flexible resources, and economies of scale”. Basically think of everything you need your business to do being delivered over the internet and with no need for onsite data centers! And I will say I have felt uncomfortable so far, but when I ask myself those questions above, I know I am so comfortable with how uncomfortable I am right now. What about you?

about the author | bola anjorin-agbaje

Bola is a Principal Recruitment Consultant servicing a full recruitment desk helping both clients and candidates with AWS and cloud needs. Outside work, she enjoys travelling, wine tasting, listening to Kpop and spending time with friends and family Her favorite holiday is Xmas!

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