Career development is the ongoing process of learning new skills and improving your current ones in order to reach the next step in your career and achieve your long-term goals.…
The start of a new year is always a time of new beginnings and change, and it’s the perfect time to set new career goals.
January is the busiest job searching month of the year, so it presents a great opportunity to boost your career through targeted reflection and carefully consider the strategies you’ll need to implement to steer your career in the right direction.
Why is it important to set career goals?
Goal setting is one of the best things you can do to make positive changes in your career. Setting specific, measurable goals helps you to clarify your ideas, focus your efforts and can provide a path to improve your career. Setting goals is critical for achieving career advancement because they provide a framework for achieving specific milestones. Choosing a career without making a plan is like sailing a ship without having planned a course: you’re likely to end up somewhere that you wouldn’t want to go! One of the most crucial steps in planning a high-impact career is implementing effective career development strategies to help you to achieve your work goals.
The process of setting goals
Goal setting is the process of taking active steps to achieve your desired career outcomes. It’s important to set short term, medium term and long term goals.
First, you look at the big picture, then work your way down to the smaller steps you can take now to begin moving in the right direction. For example:
- One year goal: ‘Secure my ideal role working for x type of company in x location’
- Six month goal: ‘Go back to college to gain a qualification in x’
- One month goal: ‘Talk to my current manager to determine any promotion opportunities that may arise this year’
- One week goal: ‘Arrange a meeting with a recruitment agency to discuss my career options’
To help you achieve your desired outcomes successfully, be sure to create SMART GOALS.
SMART is the acronym to help you establish solid goals. It stands for:
Specific: The goals you set must be clear and well defined, the more specific you are about what you are trying to achieve, the easier it will be to achieve your goal.
Measurable: It’s important to include a quantifiable way of tracking your progress so you are aware when you have hit each milestone, and can celebrate.
Achievable: The success of your goal needs to be within your control, you need to set goals that challenge and stretch you but that are also achievable.
Realistic: Be sure to set goals that are within your reach this year, for example, is it realistic to expect to have achieved a salary bump of 20k in one year?
Time-bound: You need to set a time frame for each of your goals, with deadlines attached to each one.
Here are our top tips to help you fulfil your career aspirations in 2022:
Dare to dream big
If you want to achieve big things, you have to start with big dreams. Whether you’d like to change industries, try for a promotion or move horizontally within your current organisation, don’t be afraid to dream big! Big goals will help you to achieve success and it’s okay if it seems far away or overly ambitious, don’t let that overwhelm you. To be happy, us humans need to constantly challenge ourselves.
Career planning and job hunting can be an overwhelming and exhausting process, this is why it’s important to surround yourself with people who support you and believe in you. Have a goal partner. Find someone to help you stick to your plan: a friend, co-worker or a career coach. Discuss your goals and check in with them when you complete steps. If possible, do the same for your partner!
List your skills and set an action plan to develop them
Take some time to assess where you are in your career and consider the key skills you’ve picked up along the way. If you’re interested in knowing the key skills you need to get hired in 2022 click here. Think about where your strengths and weaknesses lie and what skills you need to build on to optimise your chances of professional success this year.
Pause, and reflect on 2021
Take an in depth look at your achievements over the past 12 months and consider the degree to which you fulfilled your 2021 professional goals. Consider any qualifications or training courses you completed, any new skills you gained, any promotions or new responsibilities you were awarded, career milestones you hit and feedback you received. This will help you to determine what you can realistically achieve this year.
Write down your goals, and the steps you will take to achieve them
Some examples of work goals include:
- Achieve a promotion to x position
- Learn how to say, ‘no’
- Pick up and learn a new skill
- Find a mentor
- Go after the career of my dreams
- Become a better communicator
- Plan what steps I need to take to change careers
Place your list somewhere highly visible and revisit it every day. Set yourself deadlines for each goal and remember to celebrate each achievement to help you stay motivated.
Those who believe in themselves, armed with the right tools, can achieve just about anything.
And don’t forget—the Tiger team believes in you, and we’re here to help! If you’re interested in discovering how we can help you achieve your dream career goals this year, please get in touch.
So, as 2022 begins, we raise our glasses to you and wish you the best of luck on your professional journey!