Too many people enter several important phases of their lives without an entry plan and an exit strategy and unfortunately, without those two, you are certain to be stuck in life and constantly think that you do not have choices. When I hear people declaring that they do not have choices about a situation in their lives, I simply see people who have deprived themselves of their mental rights to make choices and are living with the physical consequences.
When I went to the Daystar Leadership Academy a few years back in Lagos, Nigeria, one of the most important things that struck me from one of our facilitators was the fact that he said, ‘as soon as I’m entering an organization I create my exit strategy.’ That got me thinking! It simply means that he does not just enter and organization without a plan to leave the same organization and he said this was very important since he was not the owner of the organization and the owner can just wake up one day and decide that he tired of seeing your face so you have to go. Ever since I heard that statement I have always lived with the mindset that it is important to create an exit strategy almost as soon as you enter an organization or even before you enter the organization.
Before we even talk too much about the exit strategy I should say that some people do not even have an entry plan and that is the beginning of their troubles! In some of my subsequent series I will talk more about creating an entry plan and an exit strategy but we should look briefly at the purposes of these plans! I have seen people who have been able to stay in organizations for more than 10 years and apart from the fact that they are growing older or lucky enough to get regular promotions, they cannot mention some significant progress that they have made in life! Some people believe that they are not making progress because:
- The job is too demanding
- Their boss is wicked
- Salaries are not being increased
- There are no allowances
- There are some external and spiritual factors affecting their progress in life!
The other side is that some people believe they cannot leave their present organizations because:
- They do not know where to start from if they leave
- Jobs are scarce so they may not get another job easily
- There is not enough money to start a new business
- Job security is important so I still have to stay here till another opportunity comes
- A few others just can’t leave because they can’t tell their superiors they are leaving!
What I think about all of this is that you are right when you say you can and you are also right when you say you can’t! The answers above will always be true when you do not have a plan so what’s the way out?
- Before you enter an organization or a new phase in your life, create a plan.
- Let the plan contain how you are going to contribute your quota, if possible, how much.
- Have a plan that talks about how you will develop yourself through that organization.
- Include a financial plan that will state what you must achieve financially while you are there in the organization.
- Include a networking arrangement in your plan. You must improve the richness of your net worth through your network and it is a deliberate thing!
The other plan tilts towards your exit strategy and they may include:
- What will you do if you are fired? You MUST answer this question almost immediately you start jubilating about the new job and if you have not, you can still do that.
- You don’t own the business so where will you go from here?
- How will you implement your plan either before you get fired or when you get fired?
You will have to visit www.foladaniel.com from time to time to get the subsequent series on this issue because I cannot deal with it in just one piece but the first and the most important thing to do in order not to remain a corporate slave or a slave in any other kind of job that you are in is to always have a plan about how to build yourself, make yourself more relevant and what you can do outside of that organization! Without these plans, you are bound to leave with the fear of the unknown!
Fola Daniel Adelesi
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