The Importance of Goal Setting and Driving your Own Career

February 15, 2024

Many people fall into the trap of “coasting” through their careers. It is easy to see how this can happen when a person finishes education and takes the first job opportunity, they get. To have something on their CV or of course to pay the bills. Then before they know it, it’s 5 – 10 years down the line and they have followed a path that they never really chose in the first place. They are unsure as to where this career could lead. Or if they want to continue this career trajectory. That is because they have let their career take them for a ride. Instead of driving their career. The way to overcome this is through setting regular career goals.

The Power of Setting Career Goals

Working with my clients on goal setting is transformative for them. It is such a simple task that it still surprises me, what an impact goal setting can have on clients, who are feeling lost or stuck in their career. There is a lot of career guidance needed first to gain clarity on what direction to go in. Then the goal setting empowers clients to take control and drive their success.

We all have dreams and aspirations, but taking the practical approach of writing them down and seeing a path formulate on how to make these dreams a reality is the real motivation factor. Being strategic about each step you take in your career in a way that leverages your strengths is how you succeed.

How to Set Career Goals

But how do you create #career goals, well the best way to start is at the end! What is your BHAG (big hairy audacious goal) it may be totally unrealistic. If you want to sing in Broadway but like me haven’t got a note in your head. Then it is hard to see how this is achievable. But if what you really want is to be a sports journalist and you did study journalism then fell into advertising sales for the next 10 years then there is potential to pivot.

First highlight your strengths and tangible skills. Then try find a link or path between where you are now and your ultimate goal. Again, if I use the example of working in sales or customer service but you always wanted to work in IT. Then look for sales or customer service jobs in the IT sector. Get insights into what roles within the company you would like to and what competencies are needed for them.

There may be a need for further education, and this can be an added factor into your goals. But to change career completing another full degree is not always necessary. In fact the Gartner 2024 future trends of work found that employers are recognising the value of diverse skill sets and willing to embrace individuals who bring new competencies to the table beyond traditional degree requirements.

Goals for Growth

Your career goals will continuously evolve, as you do. You can regularly assess your short-, medium- and long-term career goals. But the main message here is the importance of being strategic in the steps you take in your career. As this is the key to achieving future success. Working with a career consultant who can give you the objective guidance to identify your strengths match them to a suitable career for you and then work with you to create your career goals, will enable you to be strategic in your career going forward. An invaluable tool to enable you to take the drivers seat in your own career.

by Laura Griffin 15.02.24


Photo credit: Lisa Fotios