Archive for July, 2009|Monthly archive page

Try Out The Jungle Gym for Career Leverage

jungle gymNever mind climbing the career ladder. Go over and play on the jungle gym, instead. That’s what Pamela Weinsaft suggests in her post, From Challenge to Opportunity on the Glass Hammer (catchy name).  She quotes Moderator Pattie Sellars addressing a group of MBA women, “Don’t think of your career as a ladder, think of it as a jungle gym.  If you think of it as a ladder, you won’t have the peripheral vision to enable you see the lateral opportunities and especially today when you don’t know what the hot job is going to be tomorrow. You’ve got to keep yourself open and you’ve got to swing to the opportunities that come along.”

That’s very good advice for anyone in the workforce these days. And, it sounds like a lot more fun than climbing a ladder! Personally, I don’t like heights, and the narrow physical boundaries one feels on a ladder. On a ladder one has to follow behind the leader, and can’t climb any higher until the one in front moves up. On the jungle gym, there’s room for collaboration and crossover as one swings over laterally or to pass by someone who is content to just hang out. I think moving around on the jungle gym calls for more agility and momentum, than climbing the ladder.

Yes, the jungle gym is a great metaphor  for creating a fun, creative and innovative career. Now, get down off that ladder!