How to Define Career
A career is a field of knowledge and expertise in which an individual commits his or her time and energy towards the pursuit of progressively greater levels of educational, training, or practical skill sets. It is important to differentiate between a job and a career. A job is a task or series of tasks which needs to be completed to earn money in the short-term, however a career is a path taken to achieve professional goals.
Identify Professional Goals
In order to understand your career, you must first identify your professional goals. What do you want to achieve with your skills and education? Where do you see yourself in ten years? What type of job or project would you like to involve yourself in? Once you have identified your goals, you can start to map out a career path.
Create a Career Plan
Creating a career plan will involve assessing your current skills and knowledge, looking for areas of growth, and planning further steps for success.
Below are some key steps to creating a career plan:
- Assess Yourself and Set Goals. Examine your skills, talents, and interests to discover the career direction that suits you best. Set personal, academic, and professional goals to help keep you on track.
- Research Your Options. Research potential careers, job opportunities, and education or training opportunities. Consider the financial and lifestyle benefits of different careers, and the time and cost of getting to and maintaining the desired skill level.
- Make Connections. Connect with experienced people working in the field you have chosen. Ask questions and have informational interviews. This will help you determine if the chosen field is a good fit for you.
- Build Skills and Experience. Develop the necessary skills and gain relevant experience needed to succeed in your chosen career path. This may involve further education or certification, job shadowing, and internships.
- Create a Network. Develop relationships with people in your field. Keep up with industry trends and news, attend conferences, and participate in professional organizations to strengthen your network.
A career can be thought of as an ongoing journey that an individual takes to achieve professional success. It is the combination of skills, knowledge, and experience gained through education, training, and work experience that allow one to reach desired goals. By understanding the importance of creating a career plan, you can ensure a successful and rewarding career path.