Navigating Your Career
A successful career doesn’t just happen by accident. To position yourself for long-term career success, you have to have a plan and be ready to steer your career in the direction that best serves you.
Assess Where You are Today
Take stock of your current situation, so you can develop a plan of action. Ask yourself questions such as:
- What do I like and dislike about my current job?
- What are my professional goals and objectives?
- What new skills do I need to develop?
- What problems can I help my team/company solve?
- Who do I know (and need to get to know) that can help me?
From this context, you can develop a plan for what comes next.
Set Your Goals – Decide the Direction You Want to Go
It’s important to have an idea of where you want to take your career. Set concrete goals and determine how you will reach them.
Be clear and specific about the outcomes you want and how you will achieve them. Keep them measurable, and create a timeline to stay motivated and accountable.
Be proactive in exploring and understanding the opportunities available to you.
That means taking time out of your schedule to attend professional development, network, and look for ways to get involved in projects that may advance your career goal.
Set yourself up for success by staying informed about the industry. Seek out and take advantage of business educational opportunities to stay up to date with the latest trends and technologies.
Adjust As Needed
Keep in mind that your career goals may change over time. That’s why it’s important to stay flexible and be willing to adjust.
For example, if you’re seeking a promotion, brush up on your skill set and take on small projects that demonstrate your capabilities and value to the organization.
At the same time, be willing to be open to possibilities that you hadn’t previously considered.
Unleash Your Network
We all need a bit of help along the way to help us navigate our careers. Tap into your network of contacts.
Don’t underestimate the power of a network full of colleagues and industry experts who can give you advice and insight into growing your career. Participate in networking events and conferences to meet people who can help you.
Another way to leverage your network is to gain insight from mentors who have already been successful in the industry. They are a great source of advice and experience and can provide invaluable guidance.
Take Ownership of Your Career
At the end of the day, it’s up to you to take charge of your own career. Don’t wait for someone else to do it for you.
Be proactive and take responsibility for setting yourself up for success. With a plan in place and a strong network behind you, you can move confidently forward in your career.