Have you given any thought as to where you would like to be in your career two years from now? Five years? Ten years? Most people don’t think that far ahead – which is a shame because without a plan you have very little control over your career path. A common mistake people make is believing that career planning is only for those seeking powerful, high level positions. It’s not. Even if you’re just hoping to maintain the status quo, it’s a good idea to know how you’re going to achieve it.
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In my occupation, I get to meet a lot of very accomplished people – people who have consistently achieved greater advancements, and much more job satisfaction than their peers. Their success, I’ve discovered, has not come by accident, by fluke or twists of fate. Nor have most of them attained their goals by treading on the backs of others. Their paths have all been quite different, but they all shared one thing in common. They all had a plan. They knew what they would like to be doing, figured out how to get there, then took action. Looking to develop a career plan? Here’s the advice they give:
1. Set your goal
Figure out what you would really like to be doing. Don’t think too small!
2. Find a mentor
Find someone who has already achieved a similar goal, and ask them what it takes to get there. You’ll find most people quite willing to help out.
3. Set a timeline
Set a ‘deadline’ for achieving your target, then set timelines for all the steps on the way.
4. Set the wheels in motion
Take action right away – don’t procrastinate!
5. Monitor your progress
Whenever you hit a bump in the road, or are unsure as to a decision, talk to your mentor.