How to become a career driver

Nidhi Chopra, Asia Pacific Senior Human Resources Business Partner in Adobe Sydney, Australia.

As we adapt to the future of work, it’s become clear that staying career relevant is as important as ever. And with the realization that opportunities can come and go quickly, we can’t help but ask ourselves, how does one become a career driver in this fast paced world? Nidhi Chopra, senior human resources business partner in Asia Pacific, shares her reflections on the two most important attributes she believes will allow everyone to stay career relevant and become a career driver.

Nidhi joined Adobe as a university graduate in 2010 and has been in 7 different roles and stretch experiences over the last decade, including an internal move from India to Australia. She credits that it is a combination of these two attributes that helped craft her career.

Being intentional

We are living in a world where the gap between the “have” and the “don’t have” is bridging fast. A world where digital connections have created a level playing field, by making learning platforms and opportunities accessible to all. But all these opportunities mean nothing if you’re not driving your career! The two key aspects that differentiate career drivers and allow them to stay career relevant are intention and transferrable skills.

Intention is about having a purpose, a goal, a target or an aspiration. When you drive your career, while it is important to have aspiration, it is more important to express your intention to others. Drivers bring accountability by expressing their intention to others. Those ‘others’ are the network of people who help support and enable your career. This network consists of:

Every professional should aim to have at least one person in each category in their network and should actively be having intentional career conversations with them.

Honing transferrable skills

Transferrable skills are skills that can be applied across multiple areas of life, but since we are talking about career development, we will stick to transferrable skills that can be applied to multiple roles. It is important that as we create our career vision, we are thoughtful about the transferrable skills we are adding to our “toolbelt.” This is because your next career move will not depend on the job titles you have carried in the past, but the skills you have gained that can be transferrable to the new needs of the digital world. Some great examples of transferrable skills are:

While it’s possible to learn transferrable skills through training classes or reading resources, I find that the best way to gain them is through firsthand experience. A few ways you can gain new experiences without changing jobs are:

Be intentional in your development plan to gain experiences that will continue to help you enhance and build these skills!

As I enter the next decade of my career and look back at how my journey has progressed, these two skills have always helped me achieve new heights at Adobe. And as we continue to adapt to this new world, I know becoming a career driver can be difficult. To that, I say, start small. Add these skills to your development plan, and work on it one day at a time. Good luck!