With the daily assault of data, emails and information delivered at a rapid rate and requiring an equally rapid response, plus social trivia from facebook, snapchat and instagram, how many of us are remembering to focus on the longer term important issues concerning our career? It is frequently reported that most people will spend more time considering their next holiday or purchase of new electronic devices than they will planning their career. It is also worth considering that ‘good luck’ is often about where preparation meets opportunity so some career planning and preparation is needed if you want to be lucky!
The questionnaire below should help you to assess where exactly you fit in the career smart scale.
Rate yourself against each statement.
Scale of 1 – 5 with 1 being NO and 5 being YES I have done this thoroughly
How far have you……………? 1 2 3 4 5
1. Knowing Yourself
Values What is most important to you
a) in your life b) your career
Goals Have you considered what you want to achieve in the next five years? (life and career)
Skills Are you aware of the skills you enjoy using the most and the ones which need developing?
Interest How clear are you about what type of environment interests you?
Location Have you thought about where you want to be located in 3 – 5 years time?
2. Knowing Your Options
Awareness of options Are you aware of the various options which may be open to you?
Skills How clear are you about the type and levels of skill required for the next role you want?
Rewards Have you researched the reward and benefits you are likely to get in the roles which interest you?
Team Culture Can you describe the type of team culture you would like to work in.
Career Plan Have you got plan for achieving your goals?
Possible hurdles Are you aware of what hurdles there may be in putting your career plan into action.
3. Knowing Your Brand
Your Brand Are you clear what your personal brand is?
4. Knowing Your Network
Networks Are you an active member of face to face networks?
Linkedin Have you got an up to date and complete linkedin profile?
Social media Do you contribute to online debates via linkedin or twitter etc?
Career supporters Have you got career supporters?
e.g. coach, mentor, buddy?
5. Knowing About Making Career Decisions
Owning decisions Are you able to make your own career decisions or do you prefer someone else to do it for you?
Making decisions Can you decide the direction you want to go in?
Process Do you have a systematic process for making decisions?
Commitment Are you committed to your plan?
Sub totals of each column
0 – 25
Very little career planning. Could use the questionnaire as a checklist to support career planning. On the upside you may be flexible and pragmatic.
26 – 50
Some planning and focus, perhaps a little too reliant on things coming up which you like the look of rather than targeting what you want. However an element of pragmatism is always useful!
Some clear effort made towards being career smart. The question is are you not doing some things through active choice because you want flexible or because you are not aware that they support your career?
76 – 100
Very career smart and focused
Possible weakness might find it difficult when an uncontrollable event derails your plan
By Gill Amos