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How To Make A 7 Point Action Plan For Your Career
Are you one of the many people looking for employment in these challenging times? Do you have a career plan? Are you forming a plan of action? Making your lists of options? Have you been doing research for any and all advice and tips you can lay your hands on? Well, I have some good ones here I am going to share with you! These are part of my series of Hubs on how to find that job and win that paycheck you have been dreaming of. And these tips - they are good, and it’s all free! All I ask of you is that you put them to good use, and don’t be afraid to tell people where you got them.
It almost goes without saying - but by knowing where you want to go in your career – and also how to get there are important steps along the road to success. Career planning tips are vital. Make a plan and execute the plan. These tips apply to either students or people already working.
The 7 steps
1. Work out your current situation – so what are your core skills? What are your hopes in the career market?
- Where do you see yourself working?
- What kind of skills and abilities do you have?
- What are your ambitions?
- What is your personality?
- And what are your limitations?
- What kind of work suits you?
Some of us are good with money, others are good with people. Some of us are organisers, some of us are more technical minded. Some of us have the ability to come up with great ideas, while some others would rather leave that to different people, because they don't want the responsibility attached. And some of us like being given responsibilities, and some of us don't want them. we are all different.
So what kind of job plan you are working on should include these questions. Find the answers – and you are making a good start. On hopes, your response is probably “hey, there’s a recession going out there...” Yes, I know, but that is old news now. No more excuses.
We’ll come to that in points 5 and 6. This is your Plan Of Action to Get Employment. You need to match your skills and you - with the opportunities out there. And you must discover the areas where you are lacking. And don’t tell me you don’t lack something. We all do, somewhere. We just hate admitting it to others. Work out your current work situation and ask the difficult questions, and be honest. The more honest you are now, the better.
2. Know your limitations – I assume you know what your own cost of living is, and what your financial bottom line is. So if you have anything like large debts, some kind of financial obligations or responsibilities, maybe a dependent family – it may not be possible to go back to full time education, for example. Know these and plan accordingly.
3. Keep all your options open – do not worry just because you are committing yourself for life when you take a job. That went out with the old model “T” Ford car. That’s long gone. This is the 21st century now. Always keep an open mind and look for potential career development opportunities.
4. Do your research and your checks – so think about jobs you may want in the future and look at job advertisements and descriptions. Make a note of the key attributes that are required and make a plan to develop your skills in those areas. You should also be matching sets of items on one list (skills if you like) that you have - with options on another list you worked out. An example of this is like someone who has a full drivers license and so would track all jobs that could involve driving, delivery, haulage, taxiing, couriering - but always jobs that require the full drivers license.
5. Observe and learn from others – you should never miss a chance to talk to friends and colleagues and learn from them about the different job opportunities that are available. So watch what the trends are. On the subject of trends, the word on the street is, that for lots of students out there, they plan to remain as students for as long as the recession lasts. In other words, many people will simply buckle down and hold out till the storm passes. Ask yourself if that’s what you want. My understanding is that this could be a mistake. If that is what everyone is planning, you should plan what happens after that and do that next bit right now. Don’t wait for the music to change like in musical chairs. You may miss your place. Think ahead of the curve. This is the time to be bold. Knowing what other people’s choices are doesn’t mean following them too. Remember the motto – first in, best dressed. When things change and start to turn, you have to be more than ready.
6. Set way points or checkpoints – this is about the heart of your ambitions. It is important to have goals and timelines to work to. Goals without timelines are nothing but a waste of ink. Deadlines are goals but with a time limit attached.
Goals have times set by which they must be achieved. Dreams do not. Each life of every person you know is a line, a long one with way points on it, where events happen. Work related events. Learn to plan them, not randomly sit around and wait in hope. So – if you want to be in a management position by your 30th birthday, work out what you will need to achieve in order to arrive there.
7. Aim at and target companies – if it is your ambition to work for a certain organization, let them know it. Be prepared to get your foot in the door by taking a low level position and working your way up. An example of a true story of a friend of mine. He wanted to work for Google. Who, in this case are actually based in neighboring Ireland, for what he wanted. So he went to Ireland, which is another country and applied for a job. (People in other countries might not have so many problems geographically.) He targeted the firm and after some delays, he got it. He was willing to go that far to get work in the place of his choice. Yes, he went out on a limb, yes it is a long shot. That’s targeting a company! You don’t have to do that. Not yet any way. But be prepared. Especially if it means getting the job you have always wanted. Would you go to that effort for the ideal Girlfriend or Lover you wanted? Picture that person in your mind now. Now put the dream job beside her. Is this too tempting for you? Do you need a moment? I would also recommend that you check out my other hub on Networking.
I hope these 7 career planning tips have been of use to you. Having a solid idea of where you want to go really makes things easier, and knowing what type of work you want to do helps massively. Actors act, drivers drive, bricklayers do building work, artists paint, Tattoo artists ride Harleys and act in Expendables movies - okay, kidding, but you get the picture. Hubbers write hubs. No one expects job hunting to be easy or second nature. But know and recognize your strengths, as they define who you are in so many ways. And believe me – you do have them. And I wish you the best of luck in your future career.
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