Career planning is about improving your current job or seeking the next one. It is about a work and life balance — life management. It is about relationships with your boss and your colleagues. Here is how you can enhance your career.
Stay informed about new and current trends.
Become a member of professional associations.
Read books and journals in your area of expertise.
Attend seminars, workshops, conferences, and trade shows.
Promote new ideas, so you won't be seen as someone who is afraid of change.
Be open to change and eager to try new ideas. Ask to sit on committees dealing with new technologies.
Update your resume frequently, highlighting your successes and major achievements. Be sure to include projects that added measurable value to your department or organization. Don't be afraid to blow your own horn.
Take every training course you can manage — they all have something new to offer. Include them on your resume, and make sure your boss is aware of your professional-development activities and their worth to the company.
Add to your network of business associates. Stay in touch and make them aware of your present activities and future career plans.
Make contact with people who know where the employment opportunities are, both inside and outside your organization. Add professional recruiters to your network.
Determine your monetary value in the marketplace. If you find you are not being paid enough, you will be motivated to try for a raise or for a position with another firm. Three factors decide your worth:
the need for your work;
your ability to do the job;
the difficulty of replacing you.
Evaluate your strengths. What are you especially good at? Find out if key people agree with your analysis.
Focus on skills you have, or might acquire, that are unique in the organization. Fluency in foreign languages or knowledge of particular computer applications are possible examples.