A career action plan is a route that will take you from Point A (selecting an occupation) to Point B (acquiring a job and advancing in your career). Also referred to as an Individualized (or Individual) Career Plan or an Individualized (or Individual) Career Development Plan, it will help you reach your career goals.
What to Do Before You Start Developing Your Career Action Plan
To start developing a career action plan, first select an occupation. That endeavor commonly needs a significant amount of effort. To simplify the task, or at least make it more orderly, follow the career planning process. It consists of several steps. The fourth and final is to create a career action plan. Steps one through three, in order, consist of:
- Step 1-Self Assessment: During this step use several self assessment tools to learn about your values, interests, aptitudes, and personality type. Your aim is to recognize a list of suitable careers that match these traits. Ideally, there should be between 10 and 15 occupations on your list.
- Step 2-Career Exploration: Now that you know what occupations are suitable deployed on your self assessment, start to explore the ones that interest you. Do not do an extensive investigation into every single career on your list—only ones that are real possibilities deserve that sort of attention—but at least read a brief decision as not to eradicate any options based on preconceived notions about them. The occupation that appears on the surface as something you wouldn’t like could end up being the one that interests you the most once you learn more about it. Dig deeper into the careers that you would actually consider pursuing. Begin to narrow down your list to approximately three to five occupations.
- Step 3-Make a Match: Armed with data about numerous careers, begin to make a final decision. Consider about the pros and cons of each of your options. Consider job duties, educational requirements, earnings, and job outlook. Not merely must you enjoy your work, but it also has to support your lifestyle financially and should have decent job prospects. It is imperative that you be able to fulfill the educational requirements. Choose the career that, deployed on this data, is the best fit for you.
Setting Your Aims
Now that you’ve select a career, it is time to set aims which will make up the foundation of your career action plan. Involve short-term objectives which you can reach in under a year and long-term ones that will take from one to five years to achieve.
A career action plan is different than a simple list of aims. It also involves all the steps you’ll need to take to reach them. To get started:
- First, brainstorm to come up with a list of all your aims. Remember this is your list, and no one is judging what you put on it.
- Categorize them into two categories: short-term aims and long-term aims. Applying to college or a training program, for instance, will take under a year and is, hence, a short-term aim while getting your degree or finishing the program is generally a long-term one.
- Identify any hurdles that could threaten your capability to reach your aims and then figure out if and how you can overcome them. If you can’t find viable solutions, you may need to reformulate your goals. If, for instance, you have a learning disability that could impede your ability to earn a degree, find a college that provides students with resources to help them succeed.
Write Your Career Action Plan
Ultimately, it is time to write your career action plan. Your timeline for acquiring your aims should begin with your short-term ones and end with your primary objective, which at this point should be getting your first job. Few people find it helpful to begin their plan at the end. That is state the goal that will take the most time first, and work your way backward. There is no hard and fast rule, as long as your plan is easy for you to understand and follow.
List each of your aims and demonstrate how long, approximately, it will take to achieve it. Then, beneath each one, write a bulleted list of every step reaching that goal will require. Include, as well, the barriers that might get in the way, along with workable solutions for overcoming them.
Your career action plan should be flexible. Do not be afraid to make changes to it as you go. It may be essential to add some short-term goals along the way. Once you reach your ultimate long-term goal, you may need to add another one, along with more short-term objectives to help you get there.