The pandemic’s impact on people’s careers has been various: many lost jobs or whole companies; many have had their jobs significantly reshaped; others were able to carry on, albeit remotely; and some people have thrived.

And it’s likely that — for good or bad — changes are likely to continue coming: career trajectories will be altered, new opportunities will emerge, unexpected hurdles or curves will appear in previously clear and straight paths.

We have collectively had a long-evolving inflection point. Thinking entrepreneurially, we know that inflection points hold tremendous potential power. And now is the time to consider what this inflection point can mean for your career — and how to use it to your benefit. Here are four ways to begin doing just that.

1. Create a personal legacy vision. This is a holistic picture of the life and career that you want to build over the long term. We all have a tendency to spend time and effort trying to advance on our current path and remove any obstacles we come across. But, periodically, we need to ask: “Is this the right path? And is there a more satisfying path to consider?” Give yourself permission to reevaluate your true goals in every realm of your life: career, family, material wealth, community, and personal satisfaction.

2. Rethink what’s risky. Most of us are conditioned to accept society’s definition of what’s risky or not. But that doesn’t take into account our individual circumstances or our internal risk profile.

The key to managing risk is to evaluate a risk relative to something else, recognizing that there is also risk involved in not doing anything.

Choosing inaction to avoid a perceived risk is in and of itself a decision to continue on the current path (even if it is heading off a cliff).

3. Create an “individual board of directors” — a collection of people you proactively engage to help you think about and move forward in your career. The board members give you unbiased feedback on your life’s path; help you compensate for professional weaknesses; and assist you in aligning your skills and professional goals.

4. Focus on your skills advantage. While we can be “good enough” at many things, the hard truth is that most of us are very good—excellent—at just a couple things.

Think about whether “good enough” skills are sufficient to get you where you want to be on a particular career path — and will continue to be in a dynamic post-pandemic world.

Focus on the skills where you truly excel and consider leaning into present opportunities (or creating new opportunities) where they are most needed.

Inflection points bring both danger and opportunity.

How are you thinking about — and leveraging — the present inflection point?

We’d like to hear about it.

Center for Entrepreneurial Thinking: Illustrative Impact

Entrepreneurial Thinking is an outlook and mindset — one that facilitates innovation, creates proactive disruption, and challenges individuals and organizations to pursue opportunities wherever they may exist. When you think or lead, are you doing so entrepreneurially?

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