Planning a career is not a task that should be done only once in a lifetime, that is in high school or college, and then forgotten as we go ahead with our jobs and career choices. On the contrary, it is an activity that should be constantly re-looked at, on a regular basis, whether it is in tune with the trends in the current times and what can be done to improve it. According to research, an average worker is likely to change careers (not jobs) a number of times during his or her lifetime. Which is why, it is not too late or too early to begin a career plan.
Planning a career is not something that needs to be put off or a dreaded at, but it should be viewed as a liberating and fulfilling initiative that can be useful in offering you objectives in in your current plan / career or transition you towards a new path. Importantly, planning a career must be an enriching and promising experience that can enlighten your future.
Here are some tips that can help you in achieving a successful career plan.
1. Annually visit your career plans
A number of us schedule regular visits to the eye doctor and dentist and plan a number of other things on a yearly basis, so why not look into your career plan year on year? Plan a slot sometime during the weekend, at least once a year, or more than that, if you feel the need to do so or if you have plans to go through a major career haul; schedule this slot as a retreat to focus only on yourself. Try to evade all kinds of distractions so that you are concentrating only on focusing completely on your career chart on what you are achieving in life and what you plan to do towards it. By starting career-plan objectives as an annual event, you will be in more control of yourself, your career choices and the direction that you need to take and you will find yourself better prepared for the numerous uncertainties and hurdles that might lie ahead of you in your job or career.
2. Chart out your growth since the last career plan
One of the primary activities you need to undertake when planning a career is spending quality time on charting out your growth trajectory and career path, since the last. Here, it is important that you do not dwell on the past, but rather take the time to review and reflect on what you have endured that can help you to plan for the days ahead. By going through all the dead ends, curves, straight and narrow paths, you will develop greater clarity in mapping out your future plans.
3. Discover new opportunities in education or training
In spite of this being a clichéd statement, it is true that information really does lead to success and power. Never overlook opportunities to learn and grow as an employee and an individual by passing up new education or training opportunities that might come your way. One aspect of enhancing or furthering your career is by contemplating on the type of educational experiences that you need to acquire in order to achieve your career objectives. You might see such opportunities within your organisation, professional associations, local training institutions, community colleges and the like. Learning new skills or a foreign language can enhance your career potential.
At the end of the day, do not wait too long between your career planning sessions. There are a number of benefits to planning a career, regularly, from setting your goals to changing your career, towards a more successful life.