Throughout your life, you will most likely experience multiple career changes. As you shift between jobs, it can often be stressful and unnerving. Making a career plan and developing an execution strategy will significantly impact how quickly and easily you’ll slide into the next stage of your career.
When making a career plan one must consider both short-term and long-term planning. In today’s blog, we will discuss part one: Short Term Career Planning
To make a short-term career plan you must remember to refrain from getting carried away with your goals. Be realistic. What is possible to accomplish in the next one to three years? Begin planning your career by asking yourself some key questions.
What kind of lifestyle do you desire to attain?
- Has your current job allowed you to reach that desired standard of living? For example, even if you are a great people-person and you thoroughly enjoy waitressing, it may not be the job for you if you are hoping to send your four children to prestigious (and therefore expensive) colleges.
- Ask yourself if you have enough time or money to live the way you want to now.
What are your strengths and weaknesses?
- What talents do you possess that would make you a valuable asset to an employer? Be honest with yourself. Don’t downplay your abilities. What can you do better than most other people can?
- On the other hand, what are your weaknesses? Do you have many negative habits? Once again, be honest with yourself.
- Consider jobs that highlight your strengths and aren’t dependent on your areas of weakness.
- Will additional education/training magnify your strengths and turn weaknesses into strong points?
What are your likes and dislikes?
- What do you enjoy doing in both the work and home environment? Are you using the same skills in your present position?
- What things do you only take part in when forced? Take time to consider whether the job you have now most often causes you to do what you like or what you dislike.
What is your dream job? While it may seem childish to think about, unless you consider what your dream job is, it will always be just that- a dream! To do this, think about what drains you and what makes you excited. When you have a job in mind, ask people who have already made it their career for their opinion.
Evaluating your answers will help you decide where you want your career to be three years from now. After you have an idea of what you want, it’s time to formulate a plan of action and make a road map. How?
- Compile as much information as you can about your chosen career.
- Study job openings in your field of interest. It’s a great way to discover the typical requirements and qualifications needed.
Examine where you are now. Do your current skills/degree(s) qualify you already?
- If yes – visit a reputable staffing company
- If no – is getting qualified in the next few years a reasonable expectation or do you need to find a more suitable option? Whether you need a degree, a certificate, and/or simply more experience, design a plan for making it happen.
Designate this month for your short-term career planning. Remember, however, it is only step one of preparation and strategy for career switches down the road. Truly preparing yourself also involves long-term career planning. Return to our blog for part two – Long Term Career Planning – next month.
Do you have more questions about various potential job openings in your field? Contact Looking Glass Recruiting. We help you discover your best career side and specialize in matching strategic career planners with top companies.