Are you in your current career and industry based on careful planning and formal education, or is it by chance and happenstance?
However you arrived at your current role, it most likely will be the type of role you will be in throughout your career. In this blog post, I hope to provide some insight on how best to plan and excel in your profession.
There are types that “simply go with the flow” without any planning. Sometimes these types are successful, but mostly they are under performers not realizing their true potential. Key to success is planning, always striving for more, improving yourself and laying out milestones to keep you on track along your journey. Will the course change or present challenges? Of course, but staying focused on these core areas is critical for success.
This is the most overlooked aspect of one’s career. I am not suggesting you spend time everyday trying to plan for every step of your career. I am suggesting, however, that you first understand where you want to go and what you want to do. Then research the steps, promotions needed, experience and skills required, etc., to get you there. Map out a visual plan of what is required and then set a time line for yourself based on your own aspirations. Hang this career visual plan somewhere in your home to always be aware of your goal.
Always Strive for More
As explained in a previous post on Raising your Hand, always be available to take on more tasks and responsibilities that will give you the skills and experience you need to reach your goals. In addition, be proactive and look for more ways you can provide support to your team, department or company. Always be on the lookout for how you can do more each and every month. Never settle for your current output and never wait on others. Be proactive and results driven.
Not only is this key for career advancement, but ongoing dedication to improving yourself will make your life more rewarding. Improve language skills, getting certified, taking classes or courses offered by third parties, etc., Always be involved in improving yourself. Be proactive in finding courses that will help you perform better in your job. Get management involved as well. You will be surprised how supportive they will be and also impressed with your dedication to yourself and the company. These training opportunities must be aligned with your plan and be an ongoing focus.
Your plan is not complete without milestones. Milestones are markers that allow you to evaluate your progress. Are you behind or ahead of your plan? Have you missed a step, experience or activity you had hoped you would have accomplished? Take the time to examine why and make corrections. Try to stay on course as much as possible and double your effort when needed to keep you on track toward your goal!
Be proactive in your career planning because if you don’t, no one will! If you are happy going with the flow, then fine. If, however, you want to reach specific goals, follow some of the guidelines I have suggested and take control of your career!