Have you made research an integral part of your career management plan? Too often, research is overlooked until the start of a job search and that’s too late to be the most effective.

Whether you’re currently pounding the pavement in search of a new position or happily ensconced in a job you intend never to leave, market intelligence is critical to being in control of your career.

Of today’s unemployed, many are in shock because they’ve lost the job they believed would provide lifetime security—scientists, healthcare administrators, educators. In this turbulent economy, security comes only from being prepared for anything, including unexpected lay-offs and career obsolescence.

Career intelligence requires your attention in three vital areas.

Industry Trends

  1. Subscribe to professional and industry journals to stay abreast of emerging issues in your field, such as new regulations or legislation, changing customer demands and the overall growth outlook.
  2. Follow your own company and other significant market leaders on LinkedIn and Twitter to learn about new initiatives and products.
  3. Attend meetings, conferences and training sponsored by your trade, professional or industry group and ask smart questions to learn what trends others are noticing.

Emerging Technology

  1. If technology is not your primary skillset, discuss the state of your industry’s current technology and the emerging needs with a friendly geek in your company or industry.
  2. Be prepared to get onboard with new systems and applications. If you don’t, you’ll be obsolete, even if you’re nowhere near retirement. Continue learning new technologies!
  3. Monitor national news to understand emerging technologies and forecasts from the leading companies.


  1. Stop networking and start connecting with people. Find the people you want to know more about and make a point of introducing yourself and arranging a time to get acquainted.
  2. Build your online network with those in the know and follow them. Start with a small group of allies, those who are willing to make an introduction or help you when you ask. Look for opportunities in the networks of your allies to expand your own contacts with people in companies you’re following.
  3. Relationships are a vehicle for you to enjoy another’s company and to give. They’re not just a way for you to ask for help when you need it. Build your professional relationships before you need to ask for help.


Marti Benjamin inspires great work-lives in her business and career coaching practice. In this, her third career devoted to service to others, she applies the discipline of business while executing the mission of service. Since founding Business Energetix in 2004, Marti’s proprietary coaching systems have led fed-up professionals from frustration to a richly rewarding work-life.

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