This Wednesday (21), player Marta scored twice against China in the debut of the Brazilian women’s soccer team at the Tokyo Olympics. Six times voted the best player in the world, today she added another historical record to her curriculum, becoming, at age 35, the first athlete to score in five consecutive editions of the Olympics.
Marta has won everything in sporting life, conquered poverty in Alagoas, broke several sporting records, overturned myths around prejudice against women in football, is a leader in and out of sport and is a reference in women’s football. With a career of this size, she has a lot to teach Brazilians who want to be an entrepreneur, maintain an active and productive professional life or one that is successful and brings personal satisfaction.
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With that in mind, we asked career and business management experts what are the top tips they can give you on how to maintain a long working life. Comment Bruno Andrade, specialist in leadership and professor at Saint Paul Escola de Negócios, and Vanessa Cepellos, specialist in People Management at FGV EAESP.
1 – Go beyond plan A and cultivate a plan B, C, D, E….
The first tip for those who want a productive and lasting professional life is to adopt plans that are linked to the main focus of their career and that allow you to take other paths in the future.
“Seek more than one career for your life. Look for a plan B, a plan C, even a plan D. The more career options you have, the further you can go in your professional life and continue to contribute to society, other companies and other people. If that original career of yours is already a career that you are tired of, that you no longer want to practice, or if you retired, other possibilities will exist. This is because throughout your current performance you are already building these B or C plans”, indicated the specialist at Bruno Andrade, from Saint Paul.
For the FGV professor, the idea of seeking areas that complement each other and develop different skills is one of the ways to make her career lasting.
“Don’t just do the best in what you already do, but look for learning in areas related to the one in which you work. New knowledge can open doors that were previously unknown and provide opportunities to extend one’s professional life”, he pointed out.
2 – Structure your financial life
The more secure your financial life is, the less you will have to worry about working just to pay bills and debts. At this point, the idea is for you to be able to invest in your career with new knowledge.
“It may seem contradictory to prepare financially to retire soon and stop working, but the idea is that it is the opposite. If you have a well-established financial structure while you are young, you will create possibilities to invest in other careers that will not necessarily bring you the same financial return as your original career, but will give you more pleasure because you will have the financial issue resolved, or well addressed,” said Andrade.
3 – Develop hobbies and activities that bring purpose
Detaching yourself from professional activities and taking time to develop other aspects of your personal life can help you on this intense journey of maintaining a career in depth.
“Seek self-knowledge to improve social skills and emotional competences that will be important to deal with different people and new challenges”, pointed out Vanessa.
In this sense, betting on social causes, of concern for others, can keep that “glow in the eye” lit for longer.
“Conciliate an activity or work that has a purpose, an impact on society, on people and on your surroundings, and this will also contribute to your career with more longevity”, said Bruno.
4 – Make networking a work tool
In an increasingly integrated and dynamic world, maintaining good professional relationships is important for those who want new experiences and challenges in the job market. So, keep your contact book always up-to-date with what you’re doing at the moment. Remember the maxim of “who is not seen, is not remembered”.
“Don’t exhaust your networking. Meet new professionals and maintain a good professional relationship with them. Be clear about what you can provide to these contacts and how they can work together”, indicated the FGV specialist.
Planning and networking can rebuild a career.
“We need to prepare and plan before the time comes. That’s why the name is planning. So, study, start voluntarily doing certain jobs that may be remunerated in the future. Getting to know people and expanding your network of contacts in possible areas of interest that you might want to work on in the future can also be a source of developing new skills or fronts to extend your time in the market”, concluded the professor at Saint Paul.
5 – Take care of your body
Like Marta, who turned 35 playing at a high level, you can think of your body as a way to reach your goals. And here the tip is very simple: living to work is not a good business.
“It’s no use being financially well, having more than one career option, being useful, having a purpose that everyone seeks, but not having the physical or emotional structure to deliver everything they are looking for”, says Bruno Andrade.
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