In the past, people often stayed in the same job for years. Their development plan was mostly determined by the HR department or their boss. Today, with digitalisation and outsourcing disrupting jobs, it is crucial to plan your career path through crafting small, actionable steps to achieve your long term career aspirations.
Here, we outline the key ingredients to a good career plan: (i) interests and priorities, (ii) current skills and experience, (iii) career goals and (iv) plan of action.
Interests and Priorities
Like the vision and mission that guides companies and organisations, your interests and priorities provide the skeleton on which you build your career plan. We use the acronym VIP (Values, Interests and Personality) to paint a 360 picture of yourself.
- Values range from basic needs like remuneration and commute time to more abstract priorities like self-actualisation
- Interests are a combination of two or more of six broad career preferences based on Holland’ Career Typology that are correlated with characteristics in the work environment
- Personality provides a complementary aspect of Interests in terms of how you process information and relate to others
Current Skills and Experience
List out your entire career history, including all key projects that you’ve achieved.
Most importantly, if you are considering a switch to another industry or job role, spend some time identifying transferrable skills between your current job and your desired role. These are the skills that will help make your job transition easier.
Quick tip: Try using MyCareersFuture‘s skills algorithm to search for your current job. You can see what companies have listed as skill requirements to identify skills you might have.
While your Interests and Priorities show you where you want to go, your Current Skills and Experience reflect your current reality. Goals are the milestones you set for yourself in your journey to bridge the gap between the two. Identify the skills that you need to reach your career goals and explore available programmes and skills upgrading efforts to bridge the gaps.
Plan of Action
A Plan of Action spells out the concrete steps to get to where you want. While your goals can have an element of uncertainty beyond your control, your plan is entirely within your control.
Put everything together and there you have it, a career plan! As circumstances change, you might also change your mind about your desired path. Regular stock-taking of your career goals will guide you in making adjustments along the way. Best of luck!