Your five-step career battle plan.
***Credited to Accounting Technician
To conquer your career goals, you need a proper plan of attack….
Where do you see yourself in ten years? In an interview, many of us will respond to this question generically: we hope to ‘grow with the company, develop our skills and take on senior role’. That answer’s innocuous, but strangely vague, given that this question should shape our actions, decisions and priorities every day.
In fact, this question deserves more than a considered response. It deserves a battle plan.
Planning your path will allow up to make smart decisions, be prepared for the opportunities that come your way, and ultimately have the best chance of achieving your goals, whether that’s completing the AAT qualification or becoming a chief financial officer.
Step one: choose your final destination
Defining your ultimate goal is key to developing a smart, specific and achievable carer plan. Would you rather work in practice or industry? Do you want to run your own accountancy firm? Do you want to work part-time while caring for kids? How about working abroad and traveling the world? Think beyond job titles and imagine your ideal work day, how much flexibility and responsibility do you have? Are you leading a team or working alone? What’s the minimum you’d be happy to earn? Your answer should your idea of the ideal job.
Step two: decide your time frame
Don’t limit yourself to ten years – choose a time frame that seems reasonable for your goal, and be prepared to be flexible.
Step three: define your milestone
Now you have a destination, you can plan your route. What job and skills will you need to in one, two, five and ten years to reach your goal? Creating shorter-term goals within a larger framework had been proven to help you stay on track.
Step four: crate a strategy
This should encompass everything you’ll ned to do to reach each milestone. Think in terms of:
People: who you will need in your professional network? Should you seek a mentor and, if so, who?
Places: is achieving your goal possible by staying at your current company or will you need to switch? Would volunteering for a charity develop your skills faster? Are there better opportunities abroad?
Things: what qualifications and certificates will you need? Are your CV and LinkedIn profile polished and professional?
Step five: refine and revise
Your career path will be shaped not only by your intentions but by your opportunities, circumstances and network. Careful planning can help you turn these factors to your advantage, but you should be prepared to revise your plan when needed. Schedule some time every three or six months to review new developments and adjust your strategy accordingly.
You’ll reach your goals before you know it – and impress a few interviewers along the way.
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