A shift in mindset could be your best starting point for landing your next job or launching a new career path, according to one consultant.
The “Breakthrough Roadmap,” a method created by business guru Doug Berger, helps people change their mindset from limited thinking to “aspirational” thinking. Berger says that as you engage with the roadmap you learn skills that transform aspirations into bold yet practical actions that lead to your goal.
“I am passionate about helping people think aspirationally whether in their personal lives or the business world,” says Berger, author and founder/president of Innovate LLC, a management consultancy.
Berger will share his approach to solving the challenges of growth and competitive performance in “Apply the Breakthrough Roadmap to Land Your Next Job” on Saturday, February 17, from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. at St. Gregory the Great, Parish Community Center, Hamilton Square. The Career Support Group meeting is free and open to the public. For details visit careersupportgroup.org, call 732-564-0945, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
One of the first steps of the breakthrough roadmap is to ask yourself what lights you up, says Berger. As children we naturally moved toward what excited us. But over time, that spontaneity is trained out of many of us.
The breakthrough mindset supports you in being bold — not in the sense of being a daredevil, but in readiness to go for what excites you and being open to getting there through ways you hadn’t thought of before. Where you had previously allowed circumstance and conditioning to direct your decisions, you now become the author of your life based on what really matters to you. Berger refers to this mindset as aspirational thinking.
Berger identifies three components of aspirational thinking that apply to job seekers: the job itself, what the job can provide for you and those you care about, and what you can contribute to the company in an aspirational way. Berger encourages seekers to learn what aspirations drive the company and show the interviewer how they can help the company achieve its goals.
The roadmap starts with the breakthrough mindset and progresses through various phases, including bold aspirations, gaps and chasms, bridge building, action, and renewal.
As you start exploring possibilities that emerge from aspirational thinking, you inevitably come up against gaps and thought patterns that have kept you from moving ahead. Some examples could be “I’m too old,” “I’m too young,” or “I don’t have the technical skills.”
At this point people often feel intimidated and close down. However, Berger says, recognizing the gaps in your background is a good thing because they can point to what you need to do next. They give you an opportunity create a plan — to build a bridge — from where you are to where you want to be.
Building a bridge leads to taking action. It might mean taking a technical class, hiring a career coach, joining a group, or reaching out to someone who has achieved success in your area and asking if they would be willing to share some tips with you.
As you move toward and achieve your goals Berger recommends taking renewal breaks like meditation, yoga, running, or any activity that refreshes your energy and keeps you from burning out. But forms of renewal common to everyone, Berger says, are gratitude and appreciation. Taking time to think about the good things in your life and, particularly, the good things that happened today, refreshes you physically and mentally.
Berger says he has been interested in living “aspirationally” most of his life. Before founding Innovate LLC in 2000 he held senior management positions in business advisory and technology companies where he worked with executives and team leaders who wanted to achieve important objectives but couldn’t see a way to move forward.
He showed them how to think about complex situations from a different perspective and reach their goals by taking actions they had not considered before changing their view. His current roadmap developed out of his work with those companies.
Berger says his work is influenced by innovators in the fields of organizational development and performance as well as personal growth and wellbeing. Another influence has been the field of science. Before earning his master’s degree in business administration from Carnegie Mellon University, he earned a bachelor’s in physics from the University of Rochester.
“In physics,” he says, “there is a concept of ‘First Principle.’” Berger says that in the early days of his consultancy he would analyze companies that achieved great things and would identify the first principles — their fundamental concepts and values — that contributed to their success.
Physicist and philosopher Thomas Kuhn’s concept of the paradigm shift has also influenced Berger. While Kuhn focused on paradigm shifts in science — for example, Newtonian versus Einsteinian world views — the concept is often used in business and other settings to express a significantly new perspective on a current situation. This new perspective is often the breakthrough that leads to a successful product launch or a new career, says Berger.
In addition to his career experience and formal education, Berger attributes his love of innovative thinking to his childhood in New York City. His father was an entrepreneur who started and grew businesses in the garment industry, and both his parents were life-long learners. At their encouragement he took advantage of public transportation and explored the city.
From New York’s cultural offerings to his education and work in the business world, Berger has found that bold aspirations lead to success. Says Berger, “in being bold you will discover areas of life that are waiting for you that you never would have known otherwise.”