Dynamic Marketing Communiqué

Unlock your full potential! Here’s a key to becoming a committed and DRIVEN professional in your industry. [Tuesdays: Return Driven Strategy]

March 8, 2022

Miles Everson’s Business Builder Daily speaks to the heart of what great marketers, business leaders, and other professionals need to succeed in advertising, communications, managing their investments, career strategy, and more.

A Note from Miles Everson:

Have you read―or at least heard about―the “Driven” book?

In this book, authors Professor Joel Litman and Dr. Mark L. Frigo talk about the Return Driven Strategy (RDS) framework, which has 11 tenets and 3 foundations. When taken into the context of your own brand, these will lead you towards ethical wealth and value creation for your firm.

One of the things I like about this framework is its adaptability. It doesn’t only apply to one’s business but also to one’s career. All you have to do is apply the tenets and foundations to the microlevel and you have Career Driven Strategy (CDS).

CDS has been used as a management coaching tool in companies and as a career strategy framework by individuals. Many professionals, from top corporate executives to entry-level employees, use this framework to help them act strategically about their career choices.

Do you know the difference between career-driven and job-driven? In today’s article, we’ll differentiate the two and explain which one is better. Enjoy reading!

Miles Everson
CEO, MBO Partners
Chairman of the Advisory Board, The I Institute

Return Driven Strategy

“Am I career-driven or job-driven?”

Have you ever asked that question to yourself whenever you evaluate how far you’ve come in your profession?

You see, being committed to your job doesn’t necessarily mean you’re a career-driven person.

Sure, you might think “job” and “career” are similar, but they are actually not. They are two different professional elements that have a significant impact on your career trajectory.

So… who is a career-driven person and who is a job-driven person?

Before answering that question, let’s first see what Professor Joel Litman, Chairman and CEO of Valens Research, and Dr. Mark L. Frigo, Professor at Kellstadt Graduate School of Business in DePaul University, say about Career Driven Strategy (CDS).

According to Professor Litman and Dr. Frigo, using CDS to evaluate your career choices helps you ask the right questions and think differently about your goals and activities.

This also enables you to prioritize and focus your time and energy in fulfilling the needs of others while achieving a rewarding career life and personal life.

Let’s now look at the differences between a job-driven person and a career-driven person:

Job-driven Person

This person is satisfied with his or her current job and sees no need to take an extra step professionally. Employees of this kind work well, respect and meet deadlines given to them, and rarely receive complaints regarding their performances.

In short, these individuals are good employees!

However, in terms of career growth and openness to learn new skills, these people are usually not that eager. The added pressure and responsibilities that come with climbing the corporate ladder is something they aren’t always willing to take.

The downside of being job-driven only?

Whenever these people go through a sudden change in the workplace, such as a new manager or a new work culture, they are easily taken off guard. Not being able to prepare for such change causes them to panic.

… and since job-driven employees are often less likely to take an extra step to grow in their careers, they knowingly or unknowingly miss out on a lot of opportunities that could have helped them unlock their full potential.

Let’s now look at the other kind of worker.

Career-driven Person

This person is always up for challenges, willing to collaborate with colleagues across company departments, and open to tasks or projects that will help him or her grow his or her niche.

Employees of this kind have a sound understanding of what they want from their careers. They are happy with their jobs AND welcome greater opportunities. They are willing to take an extra step to unlock their full potential.

Additionally, these workers offer much more in terms of commitment. They see their careers as a journey and are excited to gain extra skills and knowledge to keep growing professionally.

Here are 5 common habits of career-driven professionals:

  • They steer clear of excuses. Career-driven individuals rarely make excuses to justify their lack of productivity or action.
  • They are one step ahead in their work schedules. Career-driven professionals don’t wait to be asked to do a certain task. They are proactive and often take initiative in the workplace.
  • They know how to keep a personal life and work life balance. Career-driven individuals are not necessarily “workaholics.” They also make time for their personal commitments while having a thought-out and practical work schedule.
  • They make networking an everyday practice. Career-driven professionals expand their connections by establishing good relationships with others. They believe these people will not only be good friends but also good accountability partners who will help them achieve their goals.
  • They deliver on their commitments. Career-driven individuals follow through on their promises. If a certain task doesn’t seem feasible in a given time frame, they politely ask for adjustments to accomplish the task properly. Supervisors and managers can count on them to deliver on tasks they have committed to.

Being Career-driven is the Ideal Path Forward

There are consequences to the approach workers take in their careers. Those who are job-driven might be happy and satisfied for now, but when negative changes such as a global pandemic or recession occur, they easily panic and make rash decisions that could negatively affect their professions.

On the other hand, those who are career-driven will likely be prepared for such situations. Be it a sudden change in the workplace or in the entire economy, they usually know the next steps to take to continue to thrive in the industry.

So… be career-driven and not just job-driven!

As Professor Litman and Dr. Frigo said, when you look at your work through the lens of CDS, you will see that being a career-driven professional will enable you to:

–  Innovate, deliver, and brand your offerings
–  Fulfill your customers’ or clients’ needs
–  Ethically create and maximize your personal wealth

… and more.

May this article inspire you to become a career-driven individual in your field of expertise!

With Career Driven Strategy in place, you’ll be guided in acting strategically about your career choices and decisions.

(This article is from The Business Builder Daily, a newsletter by The I Institute in collaboration with MBO Partners.)

About The Dynamic Marketing Communiqué’s
“Tuesdays: Return Driven Strategy”

In the book, “Driven,” authors Professor Joel Litman and Dr. Mark L. Frigo said that the goal of every long-term successful business strategy should incorporate the combined necessity of “making the world a better place” and “getting wealthy.”

That is why they created Return Driven Strategy and Career Driven Strategy―frameworks that were built to help leaders and professionals plan and evaluate businesses so they can also help others achieve their organizational goals and career goals.

The frameworks describe the plans and actions that drive returns for anyone in an organization such as independent contractors, marketers, brand managers, communicators, and other people in any field. These actions lead to the creation of wealth and value for customers, employees, shareholders, and the society.

Every Tuesday, we’ll highlight case studies, business strategies, tips, and insights related to Return Driven Strategy and Career Driven Strategy.

In planning, building, or managing brands and businesses, these strategies, case studies, and guidelines will help you choose what specific actions to take and when to take them.

Hope you found this week’s insights interesting and helpful.

Stay tuned for next Tuesday’s “Return Driven Strategy!”


Kyle Yu
Head of Marketing
Valens Dynamic Marketing Capabilities
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