Career management is a lifelong task. It is an active process in which you will track your goals and then correct them as you accumulate knowledge and work. The career planning you do is an investment in your own well being. The more you check in on your career and plan future goals, the more you will come to enjoy your work.
The hallmarks of career management include building and maintaining your professional networks, continuing to stay educated and competent in your field and managing your resume, references and other employment documents. You may want to employ a career coach, a life coach or other professionals at various stages of your career management to ensure you are doing all you can to position yourself professionally. Consider asking people you respect to mentor you through the stages of your career. Most people have more than one mentor. Offer yourself as a mentor too; you will be able to help others and reflect on your own decisions.
Career management in a few key steps
- Maintain and update your resume or CV every six months. You will be amazed at what can change and at what you have accomplished.
- Volunteer in your community; choose projects or programs you care about that fit your values and skills. Choose organizations that will introduce you to people you may otherwise not meet.
- Talk to your support system about your career plans, check in with mentors and those whose opinion you value.
- Read about your profession, new developments and leaders in your field.
- Join professional organizations that are specific to your industry. Network with others in your field, attend conferences and workshops and share best practices.
- Remain open to new ways in which to work and meet other people. Engaging in your hobbies and interests may provide opportunities that you never anticipated.