January 24, 2014
Career planning is like looking ahead at a road map. There are specific stops to make along the way before you get to your final destination.
- Pick a career industry. Stay broad.
- Choose a specific job in the industry to focus your goals.
- Research the job and the industry: employment trends, salary, benefits, hours, skills needed, education, experience required, work environment
- Visit by shadowing a job site for a day.
- Connect. Find a mentor currently in the profession you seek. Speak to the Human Resource department of a company in the industry
- Get smarter. Pursue education or professional development training. Gain experience in the field by interning or volunteering.
- Prepare. Create a resume/cover letter and have it reviewed by your mentor, your college's career center, your professors.
- Be patient. Allow 6-7 months to network. In the meantime, create a brand or portfolio to make yourself more marketable. To maintain an income, work part-time or full-time by doing consulting or freelance work. A stable part-time job is great because it allows you the chance to earn money and experience while still allowing you the time to search for a position that is better suited to your skills and education.
- Get hired. Be sure when you receive your job offer you negotiate salary, telecommuting, benefits, and hours.
- Advance. Look for opportunities to grow as a leader, to improve your professionalism, and to be in charge of project management.