3 Steps of Career Development

A set of blocks

When you have a clear understanding of what you bring to an organization, you become an empowered individual who uses today’s projects to build tomorrow’s skills.  In today’s work place career development skills are as essential as your knowledge and ability to to do the job. Professionals in today’s market place must set their own career objectives and actively manage outcomes.

Having a written career development plan with specific goals is important. But first you must understand yourself and your options. Below are the three building block steps of career development.

Understanding yourself

By developing an accurate picture of yourself, you are better able to educate others to what you can do. You can also demonstrate your potential for future learning. This step begins with the influence behavior of assertiveness. Identify clearly the key skills that you use now and have used in the past. How can you leverage them now?

Understanding your options

Today’s businesses are constantly changing, and the most successful professionals regularly seek to leverage those changes to achieve personal goals. It’s not enough just to do a great job at work. Developing multiple career goals will help you look into the future and be ready for the changes that will take place. Create opportunities for yourself by taking deliberate action. Network within your organization and the industry in which you work. Where will the industry be two and a half years from now? Whom can you talk with in your organization to find out more?

Understanding your next steps

Once you’ve identified your career goals, you are ready to develop your career development plan. Your plan must be written and measurable with a specific time frame for completion. Once this plan is outlined, speak with your boss or a mentor in the organization. Gathering feedback and support for your plan is a key link to achieving your goals.

These three steps will prevent you from being blindsided by changes but more importantly will make you a greater asset to any organization. Being focused about your objectives will make you a stronger player in the work place. With clarity about your own goals that intention will naturally benefit your day to day work.

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