When it comes to your career, you may have a million thoughts and questions flying through your mind. Whether you’re in high school, college, or already out there in the working world, you may find yourself constantly thinking about your career. Because it’s not always easy to know what to do. Trying to decide on one set career choice when you’re not overly sure on what you want to do with your life can be stressful. Especially if you’ve already started out on one career path and have realized that it’s not right for you. But that doesn’t mean you have to stay where you are a suffer. Instead, you need to take action.
To do that, you need to be incredibly conscious of every decision you make to do with your career. Because you can get to where you want to be, or even a place that you don’t know you need to be, by tracking your career. How? Well, that’s what we’re going to look at now. By taking some well thought out steps towards planning, executing, tracking, and evaluating your career, you should find yourself in a place that you’re proud of. So let’s get you started on that all-important path to career success.
What Do You Want From A Career?
It’s easy to want to jump right into the planning stages of setting your career in motion. But you have to take things slower than that and ensure that you’re able to get off on the right foot. So the very first thing you need to do is decide what you want from your career. Do you want to make a difference? Do you want to do something you enjoy? Do you want to make a lot of money and retire early? These are all things that you have to have in mind during the planning process.
What Are Your Interests?
At the same time, you should be thinking about the things that you’re interested in the most. And if you’re in high school or college, the subjects that you’re good at too. Because you can often match your interests to an occupation. Doing this will help you to figure out what kind of career could be most suitable for you.
What Are You Prepared To Do?
Finally, you also need to think about what you’re willing to do to get there. Because some careers (like medicine) can take you ten years to get there. You need to work out what kind of studies you want to do, along with training, and the time it will take you to get there.
Combining all of the above, you should be able to work out what career path is perfect for you.
Setting Career Goals
Then, now that you know a little more about what you want to do, it’s time to work on making it happen. The first thing that you need to do here is set career goals. This isn’t something that everyone likes to do, but it can often be essential to get you to where you need to be. Because with goals, you have actionable steps written down that you’re able to follow and be held accountable for.
As a part of this, you may also need to commit to studying. It really does spend on what career choices that you’ve made. If you’re about to start college or graduate school, then you probably know where you need to go from here. But if you’re already out in the working world, you might need to look into the study options you have that will fit into your lifestyle, such as evening or online courses.
After completing your studies, and often during them, you’re going to need to work on getting experience. This could be a crucial element of being able to land your dream job. So ensure that you’re interning or looking to gain work experience in any way that you can.
And you might also like to think about making connections too. Because there are certain ways that you’re going to need to build contacts in your career in order to find progression. Knowing the right people, finding opportunities, and opening doors is a huge part of furthering your career. So the sooner you can get started on this, the better.
When you set your goals, you’re also going to want to ensure that you’ve got some checkpoints including along the way. Your goals always need to be measurable, and you need to know the points that you should be measuring them. If you put those checkpoints in place, you should find that you’re able to make judgments on how well you’re doing, or what you need to approve, along the way.
Recording Your Work
Next, you should also think about how you can track your work. And that’s not only knowing how much you work and using a free timesheet calculator to keep track of your contributions, but also what you’re doing for your memory and records. Because more often than not, when you’re on a mission to get to a certain point, you need to be able to know where you are, what you’re doing, and what you need to be doing going forwards.
Detailing Your Experience
From here, you should then think about detailing the experiences that you have. Whether you’re just starting out on that career path or you’ve fast-forwarded five years, you still need to include everything on your resume. Writing a resume can sound easy, but you need to make sure it sells you well. So detail all of your best bits along the way – don’t wait until your next career move to do it.
So how do you go about evaluating your efforts? Well, the very first thing you can do to measure your career success, is to tick things off as you go along. You made a plan, so if you’re sticking to it and ticking sections off, then you know that you’re on track. Success will look different for everyone, but the best thing to remember is that if you’re on track based on your own personal career plan, you’re definitely doing something right.
But don’t feel as if you have to stick to every single thing that you plan out. Your career goals aren’t set in stone. You may find that they change, or that you need to adapt them as you move forwards. So don’t be afraid to make amends to your goals along the way. You may find that you change your ideas or want to move in a different direction, and that’s okay.
At the same time, you are going to find that you will start to achieve your career goals. And when you’ve done this, you’re going to want to set more. Because when you’ve got to a certain part, your needs will change and you’ll have to put new plans in place to get you there. This is all a part of progressive career development.
Enjoying It Along The Way
Above all else, make sure you enjoy the journey. When you’re so determined to get somewhere, it’s easy to feel as if you have to keep your head down and work hard. But that’s not always the case. Look up. Take everything in. And enjoy what you’re doing. Because before long, it will all be over, and you will have missed the best bits!
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