A lot of us turn to coaching and guidance to help us through challenging phases in our careers. But who do you turn to when your job title happens to be, “Queen of England, France and Ireland, Defender of the Faith”?
This was the question facing Queen Elizabeth I during the turbulent years of her early reign. She found herself negotiating such challenges as opposition from the House of Lords, the French threat from Scotland and a Catholic uprising. Yet, by the end of her “career”, Elizabeth was being lauded for a ‘Golden Reign’. So who guided her through this period, helping her to face down each and every challenge in triumphant fashion and turn England’s ship around, as it were?
The proto-career guide in question was none other than Elizabeth’s counsellor, William Cecil. Like every good adviser, William gave the queen honest feedback in order to inform her decision-making processes, but never made her decisions for her. He was pragmatic and realistic in guiding and supporting Elizabeth and together they strove to do what was best for the monarch and her realm.
To this day, the most effective career advisors are those who are frank and practical and who have their client’s best interests at heart.
Although you may not be Queen of England, it’s almost certain that there are times when your career hits a rough patch. In fact you may be going through such a phase right now. Whether you’re:
- Trying to find an employer to give you that first chance after leaving school or university
- Facing the prospect of redundancy
- Over 40 and looking for a new job
- Absolutely sick of your current career or job
- At odds with your new boss
- Attempting to secure a promotion or pay rise
- Finding it hard to settle back into work after maternity leave