Sticking your neck out and taking charge of your career is no trivial matter. Whether that's switching careers, going back to school, or walking away from a j-o-b to start your own business, it takes a lot of guts.
But guts will only get you so far. Once you build up the nerve and make the leap, you're no more than 5% of the way there. You still have to succeed in your new endeavor, and trying to succeed is when your worst fears (the ones that made you hesitate in the first place) will come true.
I'm going to assume you're like me and don't have a brilliant mentor, a rich uncle, or some other person who is going to show you the ropes and explain each step you need to take to take charge of your career.
You see, it's been almost 20 years since I last had a boss. I went from working in a surf shop to striking out on my own, eventually starting TalentSmart (with a partner) before I'd finished grad school.
When I set out on my own, I had all the gumption and appetite for risk that I needed to take charge of my career. At the time I thought that was all I needed to succeed.
It wasn't. I also needed guidance. Without it, I learned some difficult (and often painful) lessons along the way.
I'd like to share some of my biggest lessons learned with you so that they can help you as you take charge of your career (in whatever form that takes). As I look back on these lessons, I realize that they're really great reminders for us all.