A career action plan is a road map that can help you reach your short-term and long-term goals. After you have completed a self-assessment, researched career options, and decided on a career path, the next step is to take action.
Here’s how to start:
Set “SMART” goals:
Specific–identify your goal clearly and specifically
Measureable–Include clear criteria to determine progress and accomplishment
Attainable–the goal should have a 50 percent or greater chance of success
Relevant–the goal is important and relevant to you
Timebound–commit to a specific timeframe
Break Your Goals into Groups
Short-term goals: achieve in one year or less.
Long-term goals: achieve in one to five years.
Create a Career Action Plan
Write down your action steps so you can check them off as you complete them.
Note any actions that need to be completed to help you reach your goals. Prioritize the actions according to deadlines and importance whether your goal is to search for a job,an internship, or to apply to graduate school.
Be realistic about expectations and timelines. Don’t try to take on more than you can reasonably manage.
Be specific and do your homework. Understand exactly what steps will be required to achieve each goal.
Barriers You May Face
List barriers that you think could be a challenge and find solutions.
Keep Moving, Celebrate Success, and Amend
Above all, keep taking steps, even if they are sometimes small.
Reward yourself as you complete the steps.
Amend your career action plan as needed if your goals and priorities change.