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You Create Your Career, No One Else.

If you work long enough you will have a boss who you don’t trust, like or respect. And your career will still grow. You will develop, succeed and move ahead. You have to. If you’re committed to your career, you have no choice.

Your career cannot be determined by the person for whom you work. If you put your success and satisfaction in someone else’s hands, you could be waiting a long time and be forever disappointed.

You may not like your boss, and it is well known that people leave managers not jobs. And there’s nothing wrong with that. I’ve quit jobs because my boss was a jerk and I didn’t want to work from him. And it was the right thing to do. But he didn’t drive my career nor my level of success. I still learned and grew and made more money. And you can too.

How to Create Your Career:

1) Find out who can impact your career. Your boss can most likely tell you this, regardless of what you think of him.

2) Find out what those people think about you by asking for feedback.

3) Only put in front of people what you want them to see. You can’t control what anyone thinks. But you can control what they see.

4) Get good at self promotion without appearing self inflated. Make sure the people who can impact your career know your team’s most recent accomplishment. Not your accomplishment, but your team’s. That will add and aspect of humility to self promotion.

5) Ensure you have a line of communication to your boss’s boss. Don’t leave it to your boss to promote you to others. That’s your job.

Don’t wait for people to promote you, give you opportunities, or mentor you. Create your career. You choose the path. It doesn’t choose you.


Shari Harley is the founder and President of Candid Culture, a Denver-based training firm that is bringing candor back to the workplace, making it easier to give feedback at work. Shari is the author of the business communication book How to Say Anything to Anyone: A Guide to Building Business Relationships that Really Work. She is a keynote speaker at conferences and does training throughout the U.S. Learn more about Shari Harley and Candid Culture’s training programs at

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