Powered by Passion: How to Build Your Dream Career

Frank DiGiammarino is a man of many questions — a fact that quickly became evident within the first few minutes of his presentation.

He posted a detailed list of career-related questions in front of the packed Next Generation of Government Training Summit audience gathered to hear his insights on career management. But there was one in particular that seemed to denominate the entire session: “What is your passion?” For some it was an easy answer, but for others it required some serious thought.

DiGiammarino was the guest speaker for the breakout session “Framework to managing your career,” held during the annual GovLoop and Young Government Leaders Next Generation of Government Training Summit July 20-21.

The session was designed to help attendees learn how to identify their passions and use them as a tool for building the right framework for their ideal careers. DiGiammarino took time to share his own professional journey and the challenges he faced in pursuing his passion of public service.

Attendees in turn voiced their concerns about obstacles to career advancement, challenges with leadership, avoiding complacency and adapting to change.

There was also a discussion on career happiness. According to DiGiammarino, knowing who you are, understanding why you do what you do and identifying what you really want to do can help achieve the proper balance in personal career happiness.

He shared his chain of seven values that must be prioritized to help define the lifestyle that you want to lead. Those values included standard of living, location, friends, family, community, health and hobbies. As we grew older and gain more experience, the order of our value chain can change to accommodate where we are personally and professionally.

No matter what stage we’re in, passion when combined with the value chain is key in building the framework for zeroing in on that dream career.

After his presentation, DiGiammarino answered questions from the audience and provided honest feedback on how to overcome obstacles such as lack of responsiveness from leaders and financial concerns.

He repeatedly urged everyone to take full ownership of their careers and its direction. No more excuses or waiting around for opportunities to appear. Each person must be solely responsible for building their own framework and finding a way to handle the challenges that will appear during the process.

Some additional tips for building a career framework are:

  • Be open (prepare to do something you’ve never done before)
  • Have advisors (everyone needs a support team they can count on)
  • Ask questions (interview people who are doing the job you desire to do)
  • Talk to yourself (figure out what you need to succeed and why)
  • Be brutally honest (what are your strengths and where do you need work)
  • “Enroll” your boss (if possible, discuss your career plan with your boss to help them understand your objectives and why)
  • Remember that “managing your career, is a career” (it takes time and attention to create success. There are no quick fixes.)

DiGiammarino also recommended that attendees write down their framework and review it at least once a year.

For more information on how to build the framework of your career, check out DiGiammarino’s free E-book “Happiness is a balance: A Framework to success” on www.govloop.com under resources. The E-book also contains a reading list of materials that were referenced in the session.

From July 20th – 21st we’ll be blogging from GovLoop and YGL’s Next Generation of Government Training Summit. Follow along @NextGenGov and read more blog posts here.

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