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how you should plan your career

How You Should Plan Your Career: 8 Easy Steps

Many people plan for their careers early on in life, whether inspired by someone or made to by societal or familial pressures. Sooner or later, we all leave school and have to choose a job, that turns into a career. However, planning out that career doesn’t have to be a one time thing.

To properly plan one’s career, you need to constantly assess your goals, see if your circumstances after a few years have changed these goals in any way in order to alter or improve the path you are on (and in some cases, start down an entirely new path). It’s a liberating process that should be approached with excitement, and here are 8 quick tips to help you with your career planning.

#1 Annual assessments

If you can file tax reports and get physical exams every year, you can certainly plan out your career once a year as well. It’s easiest to do this when you’re away from work, during a holiday vacation period or a personal retreat. Think about all the things you want in life and how you want to get there.

#2 Learn from the past

Once you’ve gotten into the habit of yearly planning, learn to look back on your past assessments and see how far you’ve come. Note the things you’re happy with and what you think you could have done better or differently, and then reapply the same process of reflection for the future.

#3 Know what you grow to like or dislike

It’s no secret that people change, and it’s a good practice to take these changes into account when planning your career. Write down what you like, including your hobbies, and see if your passions can influence your career or if you can even make a career out of them.

Conversely, try to veer away from things you’ve written down. If you find that you’ve written down things that are closely tied to your current job, then it may be time to shake things up.

#4 Note down your past accomplishments

Keeping a record of the awards and recognitions you’ve earned isn’t just good for your resume. You can use this to remind yourself what you’re good at, what you worked hard for, and what you succeeded in. Hopefully these could inform you when it comes to pursuing a new career venture, giving you that much-needed confidence in order to make that jump.

#5 You are not your job description

Just because you have a job title, doesn’t mean you have to stick to a linear career path. Every job has certain skills that can be applied in multiple ways, and it’s just a matter of finding the right way to use them. Always think of yourself in terms of the skills you’ve learned instead of your current position, and more options will open themselves to you.

#6 Know your industry and its trends

Is the company you’re in doing well? What if it isn’t? What about the state of your industry as a whole? Businesses can grow and shrink on a yearly basis. Knowing the best time to take advantage of a market boom can make all the difference in dictating where your career’s success can go next.

#7 Explore opportunities for education

Knowledge is power, and that applies to your career as well. The more you know, the more valuable you’ll become as a prospect, allowing you to shoot for better jobs. Dedicate time to researching on your own, be it through company programs, local universities and colleges, or simply the right internet outlets.

#8 Where can you take your career next?

Reflecting on the past, listing down the present, and mapping out the immediate future are all good, but looking far ahead can also be beneficial. Planning for the eventual decline of an industry, drawing up multiple possibilities and diverging paths, etc. All this can give you food for thought on where you could end up in the future.

Marco de Leon
Marco de Leon About the author
Marco de Leon is our resident wordsmith. Whether it’s spinning scintillating stories or penning poignant poetry in his spare time, Marco takes great pride in his attention to theme and overall narrative. And when it comes to blogging and web content creation, Marco doesn’t rest until he knows he’s worded something just right for the targeted audience. What does Marco do when he’s not writing copy? More writing! He’s a dedicated e-Sports journalist for the biggest game in the world, League of Legends. But if he had to pick three things to do if he didn’t write, it would definitely be dancing, rapping, or bar-tending.

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