On average, you will probably change careers seven to ten times during your life.
Sometimes you change careers because of changes in your own needs, desires, and requirements. Sometimes you must switch careers due to changes in your profession
or industry outside your control. For these reasons, career management and planning should be a life-long endeavor. The first step in career planning is determining whether your current career meets your personal and professional needs.
To help determine whether you are in the
right career, ask yourself some of the following
- Do you enjoy going to work most days?
- Do you enjoy what you do on the job?
- Are you motivated to seek advancement
in your career?
- Are you willing to put in the extra effort
to succeed in your career?
- Are you in a stable or growing profession
- Do the requirements of your career
match your lifestyle?
- Are you satisfied with the time commitment
your career requires?
- Where do you see your career taking
you in the next three to five years?
If you answered “Yes” to many of these
questions, you are probably in the right career.
For you, career planning will entail seeking ways to learn and grow in your career. You must determine what skills and characteristics to develop, and what additional experience you need to continue your professional development. If you answered “No” to more than a few of these questions, it may be time to consider a new career.
Gather Information about Yourself
When researching a new career you first need to understand more about your own personal and professional goals. You should develop a clear sense of what you enjoy doing,
what you don’t enjoy, and the balance you are seeking between career and lifestyle. To help you determine your personal and professional needs, review the following self-assessment topics. Consider your talents. What are you good at? What do others say you do well? What do you learn easily? Make an inventory of these skills, abilities, and talents and consider jobs or careers that require these attributes. Consider your interests. What do you enjoy doing? What do you wish you had more time to do? What field of study do you want to learn more about? What classes have you taken in the last three years? You will devote more energy to your career if you enjoy your work. Consider your reward. What is important to you? What will keep you motivated and energized? Decide how important things like salary, time off, prestige, and work environment are to you and use these criteria when thinking about your new career.
Asking these and other questions, and then researching the answers, can help you narrow your choices and find the ideal career.
Stay Focused and most importantly, Stay Professional!