The Career Management Cycle
What is Career Management and why start now?
A career management plan is an important tool for deciding what you want to do with your professional life, what your aspirations are and how you can achieve your goals under a certain time-frame. It is important to get started with the planning process early on. This will help you get a head start in mapping a long term strategy that is attainable and puts you on a meaningful career path. Ideally, your goals should include short-term goals (1-2 years) and long-term goals (3-5 years). Once you have mapped your career plan, keep in mind that your focus and motivations may change over time, so it is important to revise your career goals every few years.
The career management cycle consists of 5 stages: 1) Self-assessment 2) Exploration 3) Planning 4) Action 5) Reviewing. Start by asking yourself, "where am I in my career right now?" If you are early in your career, you may want to begin by assessing your skills, competencies, interests and values. Each step requires a pen and paper and a willingness to assess yourself honestly. Save your answers from each step by writing them down. At the end, you will be able to map your strengths, career options and goals.