Pigeonholing Yourself

Was just having a conversation with an old friend recently. This person is feeling what most of us feel when we hit our early-mid-life-crisis – boredom and frustation with his/her core work skills.

The problem comes not because you aren’t good at what you do. Instead, you are so good that nobody believes you can do anything else. Being pigeon holed is extremely dangerous in the new economy. Things often change so fast that you will be obsolete if you are a one-trick pony.

But then again, our work often requires such high specialisation of skills we tend to pour most of our effort into that particular area. And with experience comes a certain degree of indispensability (don’t tell me that usual line that everyone’s dispensable).

The best way out of this situation, IMO, is to upgrade to other skills in baby steps. Core competencies cannot be denied, but you have to get ready evidence that you can move laterally in the same plane of existence.

Yet most people I’ve seen never get around to doing this. Their focus is on getting the job done, when it is the job that will destroy them later.