Career Complacency: How to overcome it at the right time?

Who doesn’t like to be settled in a job? You are going to the same office every day, meeting the same set of people, doing the same task? Life seems perfect, isn’t it? But wait! What if there is an unexpected situation and you have no option but to step out of your comfort zone? There can be sudden automation of your profile, there could be a mass layoff, you may have to change city due to certain personal reasons. The possibilities are many.
If you have got too comfortable in your job that the very thought of any change scares you, you are facing Career Complacency. While being content in a job is good to a point, being overly confident that you don’t need to face any change can derail your career.
Career complacency is a fairly new term that has caught the attention of many professionals. This clearly points at the lack of ability to take on new challenges. Complacency can be detrimental to your career, especially if you still have a lot more working years left. Change is only permanent thing in a professional landscape. There are new skill sets added every day, advanced technology pervading every sphere, mergers and acquisitions leading to industry consolidation, changing industry norms, and of course developments in the macroeconomy. So, there is no room for Career Complacency.
Here are a few steps that will help you to break the comfort zone?

(1) Identify what is stopping you

There is an inner resistance to certain factors that makes employees too comfortable in their current roles and companies. You need to identify these areas because you probably need to work on them first. Are to resistant to travelling for work? Do you loathe a more subjective kind of job? Are you not comfortable with a bigger team? Are you afraid to try anything that is not process-driven? Introspect thoroughly and you will find the answer.

(2) Gear up for a new challenge

Who doesn’t like winning a challenge? While it is true that you are very happy in your current role, challenge yourself to do something different or do the same thing differently. You may also set a reward for yourself if you fulfill that challenge. Not only will it add excitement to your life but also prompt you to do explore a different territory in a fun way. Talk to your manager about a new role, more responsibility or offer to bring some changes in the process. Doing this will also motivate you at work.

(3) Do a progress review with your seniors

It is a normal thing to wait for the annual or quarterly appraisal. But if you really want to excel at work, why do not a periodic review yourself. You can speak to your seniors and get candid feedback of your monthly performance or project-wise performance, so as to improve. This way you know exactly where you stand. Be open for constructive criticism and discuss how you can improve your day-to-day performance.

(4) Network like crazy

There are many other professionals in the same industry as yours but from a different company. Getting in touch with them or professionals with similar interests widens your horizons. You come to know about their way of working, the challenges they face and also prospective leads to any learning opportunities. No matter how content you are in your job, networking with fellow industry men gives you a chance to socialize as well as grow at the same time. Today, with the help of many online platforms and trade seminars, you can network like a pro.

(5) Reinvest yourself

With every passing day, there are new skills and technologies displacing the older ones. One day even your skills and experience may become redundant. In these cases, the only solution is to invest heavily in your learning or growth. Join a new course, polish your existing knowledge, and get a degree or simply reskill yourself. There is nothing more unfortunate than being redundant in an industry in which you have invested so many years. So pick an area of interest that is relevant to your profile and start gathering knowledge.

(6) Explore your passion

Job isn’t the be all and end all of your life. There is life beyond your work. Develop a new hobby, revisit your passions and add some fun activities to your schedule. Not only does this increase your productivity but also helps you see a newer side of yourself. Who knows, maybe you can embark upon an entrepreneurial venture based on your hobby and turn it into a full-time vocation? Unless you take the lesser known path, you may never progress


There is nothing more self-sabotaging than Career Complacency. Do not let this ruin your professional life. Break away from your comfort zone at the right time, and you may be pleasantly surprised by the turn of events.