Connecting your pins: announcing a new release of SpatialCV™

Guy Loftus and Simon Neal, 26th February, 2019


SpatialCV™ was originally launched in May 2018 as a knowledge sharing platform created by geoscientists for geoscientists to increase their visibility and connectivity.  By the close of 2018, over six hundred experienced geoscientists had pinned more than eight and a half thousand pins across the globe, two and a half thousand of which are visible for all to see on Knowledge PinMap™, while the remainder are managed on corporate servers.  Last month’s article on “stepping-stones” [1] demonstrated how combining career outlook with career experience, facilitates autonomous career management. The current article announces a radical new release of SpatialCV™ to enhance autonomous career management by de-constructing our experience, broadening the user base and responding to user requests by giving more interactive functionality to knowledge holders.  SpatialCV™ can still be used to increase visibility by just sticking pins in a map, but if you choose to get more out of your career, you can now do so much more.



21st century careers are much more fluid than they used to be.  There are many more career options to choose from and lateral mobility between companies and between career options is more flexible than it has ever been [2].  Greater diversity in roles means that the roles themselves as assignments or as job titles, have become increasingly modular, split between managerial and technical streams. Last month’s article showed how we can sequence these modules to customize our careers [1].  Deconstructing our own careers in this way also makes it much simpler looking for a job. 

Most of us have been pursuing modular careers all our working lives as part of the natural flow of personal progression.  Each module has a job description that typically lasts between 3 and 5 years, with managerial modules tending to be shorter than technical.  Technical modules can be extended even further and if tenure in a single role exceeds 6 years, the likelihood is that we may have chosen a more specialised career path, which demonstrates exceptional depth.  Whether we actively sequence modules or not, we tend to perceive our careers as a single continuum: a narrative of career fulfillment that sometimes works and sometimes doesn’t.  If we invest too much in a single pathway, reducing options in this way often leads to career traps, not through any fault of our own, but because industry or our company have lowered the ceiling on that module or function in role.  By failing to see our careers as modular, we risk missing the opportunity for a course change.  Career traps are perceptual; they are not real.  In a century that has only known modular careers, if we feel trapped, we simply review our sequencing to identify the next best module and change track.



Autonomous career management empowers us to review our own aspirations (and our performance against those aspirations) and to examine how others have managed to achieve theirs. Having real peers as well as role models either anonymously or through dialogue can reset our expectations, encouraging us to rejuvenate our own career prospects. The following 5 activities can help us to achieve career autonomy:

1. Career Health Checker– invites us to reflect on where we are now in our careers and to compare our outlook with our definition of success for the future [1]. To review where you are in your career and project where you want to be, click HERE.

2. Pinning- where experience is de-constructed over space and time by sticking a pin in a map of the world wherever we have acquired knowledge through a job or an activity [3]. The pins are published anonymously on the Knowledge PinMap™ revealing the existence of content knowledge without revealing knowledge content.

3. Profiling (enhanced) - allows us to filter and search the Knowledge PinMap™ to identify individuals who possess content knowledge and/or job roles which we are interested in, and sequence those to examine their career paths [4]. At this stage, there is no way to establish who actually owns the pins - just that the content knowledge or career path may be of interest.

4. Channeled Networking (new) - having identified a person of interest from profiling, we can now make contact with that person. As the enquirer, our identity is known to the knowledge holder (but not our pins), opening a channel for the knowledge holder to reply and to conduct a conversation without revealing their identity until they feel comfortable doing so [5]. If they do not wish to continue the conversation, they can “decline”, closing the channel. The identity of knowledge holders is always under control of the knowledge holder.

5. Knowledge sharing (future release) – knowledge sharing as an activity is not available yet but will allow a moderator to set up a knowledge interest group of their choosing to bring a broader spectrum of opinion to bear on a topic of common interest.

Activities 2,3 and 4 are facilitated by the new release of SpatialCV™, de-constructing modular careers, illustrating how we as geoscientists can pursue a career simply by accumulating modules opportunistically because we enjoy the work. Or we can sequence them efficiently to achieve a target and profile other users’ experience to see what works, without needing to know the identities of those users. Whether we choose a “formative” or a “leisure” career [2], the new release of SpatialCV™ grants us options to manage our career development autonomously, shaped by our definition of what success in a career looks like:

Test case 1

Early career professional takes some time out of her career living abroad with her husband. She returns home ready to reboot her career hungry for a job. On the 22nd of January 2019, she uses Career Health Checker [6] to see how her outlook compares with her peer group. Encouraged, she registers on SpatialCV™, de-constructs her own experience and then profiles other more experienced geoscientists to see if any match the stepping-stones she sees for herself. She identifies two potential candidates by their pin sequences but doesn't know who they are - so she tries “channelled networking” and submits a protected collaboration request. After a brief anonymous exchange between one of the candidates, on the 30th of January, having built mutual trust, they agree to exchange their identities: in effect in just over a week, she has found someone to help her guide her career choices*.

Activities can be optioned to respond to typical questions like:


To read a more detailed account of the new enhancements to SpatialCV™, click HERE.


The opportunity landscape for the job market in the 21st century is significantly more accessible than in the past, particularly to those possessing a roadmap.  Recognising the modular character of job roles or assignments is the first step towards sequencing jobs to achieve our goals.  SpatialCV™ takes advantage of its unique career visualization capability (in space and time) to establish sequential stepping-stones towards autonomous career management by adding connectivity, peer comparisons and personal outlooks for the future.  

Every few years, we all reach a nexus in our personal development, causing us to pause to consider our next move. We ask ourselves if we are heading in the right direction with our choices and at a pace that suits us; we list in our minds what is good about what we have chosen and what could be improved before deciding whether to remain or change. The Career Health-Checker provides a framework to initially broaden, then polarise our choices.  SpatialCV™ provides the crowd-based breadth of experience to verify those choices or simply window-shop for alternatives.  By connecting both tools with the new enhancements in 2019 [7], we now have the means to guide our futures with the benefits of hindsight. 

Your value as a knowledge holder is no longer determined by "someone’s inability to see your worth"; it is there for everyone to see, engage with and for you to direct. The rest is simply luck, which only works if you are prepared for it.

The challenge for YPs remains how to position themselves to succeed in a chosen career when there is so much uncertainty around outcomes.  Exploration is by definition a journey in to the unknown and careers are no different. If you want to realise your full potential you must first articulate what success means to you before you attempt to select your own stepping-stones to cross a river with uncertain pitfalls.



[1] Loftus, Guy W.F. and Neal, Simon, 2019 - New Year’s Resolution – New Careers Revolution? []

[2] Career Blending []

[3] Pinning: de-constructing experience []

[4] Profiling: screening content knowledge []

[5] Networking: channeled neworking []

[6] Geoscience Career: preliminary observations []

[7] New enhancements to SpatialCV™ []

*If you would like to know more about her journey, please send an email to