Book Review


The Mid-Career Success Guide by Sally Power

Praeger Publishers, 2006


In these uncertain economic times, employees are concerned not with just how to prepare for future job opportunities but with being the best qualified person for their current roles. 


 In The Mid-Career Success Guide, Dr. Sally Power, a professor of management at St. Thomas University, offers an insightful and practical guide to empower mid-career professionals to proactively manage their own career development. Dr. Power advises individuals to (1) articulate their Personalized Work Focus (PWF), (2) learn about this PWF and how it will change in the future, and (3) take full responsibility for shaping and managing their careers.


Dr. Power states, “Employers own jobs, but individuals own their work.”  Whether individuals are maintaining, building, or changing careers, their Personalized Work Focus is key.  Much larger than one job or one employer, the PWF is a constantly evolving portfolio of knowledge, skills, and experience to be analyzed and expanded in the context of a multi-employer environment.   


In pinpointing their Personalized Work Focus, individuals should drill down the work activities that keep them interested and engaged; the topics they want to learn more about, even in their free time; the roles they want to assume within 3 to 5 years; and the work-related results that give them the greatest satisfaction.   


Whereas jobs come and go, the Personalized Work Focus is our life’s work.  Therefore, working professionals need to stay updated on the hot topics, changes, and controversies in their career fields.  They should continuously develop and refine their work focus to meet future demands.


To assist readers with their career-related research, the book closes with an Appendix of Career Management Resources developed by reference librarian Janice Kragness.  This section covers article databases (accessible through the Walden University Library as well as public, academic, government, and private libraries) that are far better sources of authoritative career information than resources on the Internet.  Ms. Kragness provides not only tips for researching career hot topics but also resources for mining potential employers, networking contacts, and support organizations for  small business owners.      


It has been stated, “The best way to predict your future is to create it.”  Dr. Power’s book is a terrific resource in challenging individuals to be alert and adaptable to future changes as the world of work rapidly evolves.  


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