Have you ever gone on a vacation without planning it out ahead of time? Were you able to go back feeling like you’ve made the most out of your journey? It’s hard to enjoy the moment when you’re making things up as you go. While it’s nice knowing you’re still going on vacation and seeing a lot of things for the first time, you could be missing a thing or two along the way. For most people, it is more fulfilling to travel when you have a vision and an idea of where you want to be, as well as a basic plan of the things you want to do. For some, it even triggers a different ‘sense of urgency.’ The drive to accomplish more.
Imagine finding yourself in the same situation, only this time, the stakes are higher. Picture yourself on the verge of taking a step that could leave a lasting impact on your life and career. Would you prefer to go unhinged or would you rather face this situation with a plan of action?
Check out these three steps that’ll help you develop a comprehensive and effective career development plan:
Reflection and self-evaluation. Where do you stand and where do you want to be? It’s a challenging assessment for a lot of us, often because of the fear of acknowledging how far we are from where we once imagined ourselves to be at this point in life. However, in order to make a clearer path for our future, we must first learn to be genuinely honest with ourselves. Just like the old saying goes, “Start with the man in the mirror.”
Break down your goals and track your progress. What are your main goals for this year? How do you plan to achieve them? Make an outline of what you’d really like to do as well as the steps needed to get there. Make a detailed list of career options by evaluating your interests, skills, and values through self-assessment. Then, narrow your career options by reviewing career information, researching companies, and talking to professionals in your desired field. Also, track milestones for each goal along with the key activities for each milestone. To start, it’s absolutely critical to break down the overarching big goal into measurable and attainable steps.
Gain experience and implement your action plan. Select the career paths that are best for you and work on gaining experience that are relevant to the ones you’ve chosen. How many paths you pick depends upon your situation and comfort level. Several paths can get you more potential opportunities, while narrowing to one or two options will help you concentrate and possibly manage your resources more efficiently.
Finally, consider enrolling yourself in an online career training program to get more relevant insights and topics that will help you with your career growth. Ultimately, creating a career development plan is one of the best things you can do for yourself. Though, of course, that doesn’t mean you can’t re-evaluate your options later on in life. As long as you have the discipline and determination to reach your goals, as well as the willingness to step out of your comfort zone to achieve them, there’s always going to be an abundance of opportunities for you to take advantage of. You just need to identify them.