If you're like most working professionals (65 percent, according to a TopResume poll), you're longing for a career change this year. You can see it in your mind: how energetic you'll be as you get ready for work in the morning, how enthusiastically you'll throw yourself into projects that give you life. But how do you get from here to there?
Many people have big goals and even bigger hopes for their work life at the start of a new year; what they need is practical guidance on charting the course. Career advice expert Amanda Augustine has laid out a meticulous step-by-step action plan (emphasis on action!) for blazing your path to a great new work role.
This is a killer excuse to crack open a shiny new planner and design the career of your dreams. Head to Amanda's Jump-Start Your Job Search page for access to the full step-by-step plan, and to just get the wheels turning, keep scrolling for the first five steps of the plan.
Step 1: Think about what you wanted to be when you grew up.
"Sometimes, in order to move forward, we must look back — for inspiration, lessons, or clues that can help guide our way. Think about what you wanted to be when you grew up. While you might not be able to pursue your childhood dreams, consider how you can leverage your current skill set in an industry that gets you closer to that work."
Step 2: Inventory your skills and interests.
"Make a list of every job, internship, and volunteer role you've held in the past 10 years. Then, write down exactly what you liked and disliked about each position. Look for themes that will help you identify career paths that interest you, as well as play to your greatest strengths in the workplace."
Step 3: Figure out your next move.
"The most successful job-search plans begin with a clear goal. Where do you want your career to go? Are there any positions you need to pursue today that will allow you to gain skills and experience required for your future dream job?"
Step 4: Write down your goals.
"You're 10 times more likely to accomplish your goals if you write them down. Once you've decided on your job goal, document it. If you successfully complete your goal, what would that look like? What would be the outcome? When you define success, you're creating parameters that will help you stay on track. Post your goal near your home computer or store them on your phone to stay focused."
Step 5: Create a target company list.
Based upon your job goals, what companies interest you? Build a list of target employers that meet your location, industry, size, and corporate-culture needs. Use this list to search for job openings and people within your network who can provide you with an inside track on the organization and its hiring needs."
Find access to the rest of the action plan here.