Two Tiny Words, One Big Difference

Published: October 2, 2013
By: Faye Hollands

If you’re itching to move your career or business forward there’s one thing you must do regularly, but unfortunately the busyness of day-to-day life tends to distract many people from doing what really matters when it comes to creating a career they love or a business that booms.  Don’t fall into the same trap – take a moment now to differentiate between these two tiny words that can transform your professional life…


When you look at your career or business, how much time do you spend working ON it?   I’m not referring to the technical nature of your job and the day-to-day things that keep it going – that’s working IN your career.  What I’m talking about is taking action on tasks that propel your professional life forward and build a bigger and better job or business.

Working ON your career is very different to working IN it.  Once you notice the difference and work out a plan to address BOTH that’s when you’ll see true progression.

Here are some examples of working ON your job or business: –


  • Networking (not because you want a new job, but because you realise the value in having a strong professional network)
  • SWOT Analysis (so that you continue to address your weaknesses and build on your skill base)
  • Education (to keep building your knowledge to position yourself for promotion or new opportunities)


  • Marketing (even if you don’t need new clients now, you will in the future)
  • Creating new products/services (to expand your offering and improve revenue)
  • Strategic alliances (these build a sales force regardless of how many staff you do or don’t have!)

It’s often too easy to get distracted by your day-to-day work and think you don’t have time to spend on tasks that will develop your career, which are perceived as luxuries when you’re working long hours and under the pump.  Yes, working ON your career takes planning and commitment, but it’s well worth the effort and will pay off in the long run because those are the actions that move you forward.

So to get started, block out some time in your diary and then plan what you’re going to do to work ON your career. It doesn’t need to be groundbreaking stuff, just make sure it’s different from the technical nature of your day-to-day job.

When you apply this approach consistently you’ll start to see a shift in your progress as you learn new things, develop new skills, or bring about changes in your business that enhance productivity or profit.  It’s a win-win that’s definitely worth your time and attention.

Faye Hollands

About Faye Hollands

Faye is an accomplished Career Coach, Small Business Coach and Productivity Specialist who has successfully coached countless clients on how to create a career they love, get more done in less time, and achieve personal and professional success. To receive weekly articles to improve your career, business and time management skills click here or book your Free Focus Session here.

You can contact Faye on +61 2 8323 4335 or email

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