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Career planning - a thought process

June 20, 2016

How career development benefits from concrete planning

By Markus Brenner

1)    Career planning is something you are required to do not only upon entering the world of work but also during all subsequent stages of your professional life. Actually, the process begins with deciding on what educational path to follow.

2)    Take career planning seriously! Before focusing on specific job-related aspects, you need to address the issue of what you understand by “quality of living”. That is the crux of the matter. Quality of living is a complex notion. It can mean different things at different points in life and is closely linked to your family background, the cultural environment you are in, your inclinations and talents as well as the career opportunities you see for yourself when you look at your situation pragmatically.

Quality of living has many facets to it, including your family, your pastimes, your cultural desires, your preferences in terms of location—and, of course, your career.

Career planning—a thought process
Writing down your career goals can be helpful.

3)    Once you are clear about how these building blocks interrelate in your specific case, you can start to develop your career vision. In this context, it is important that you play out different scenarios, ranging from the best case to the worst, because your success in terms of career development will ultimately depend also on the realities of the job market.

My advice to you: Do not just run after an attractive paycheck. If you are honest and realistic and arrange everything else accordingly, your paycheck will soon take care of itself.

Review your talents. Do the education and training you have under your belt match the career goals you hope to achieve next? Do you have sufficient information about the fields you intend to work in? Will your short-term goals offer you opportunities for further development in the medium run?

4)    Do not let popular and common vanities influence you in your career planning. Those who do something for the sole purpose of impressing others rarely achieve the success they want.

5)    What if things do not go according to plan, as is often the case when the economy is weak? Then creativity is called for: Doing internships that pay little or no money may soon prove a solid career investment. Spending a year working abroad can open up completely new perspectives. Getting involved in time-limited projects is an excellent way to gain a wealth of experience. Etc., etc.

6)    An important aspect to keep in mind: Never wait for anyone to do anything for you.

You need to be proactive and maximize your communication efforts. Promote yourself. Be consistent and unwavering when it comes to finding your place in business. Happy career planning!!

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