Are you sitting at the same desk, in the same chair, doing the same job you were five years ago? Do you want to move up, or possibly, move on? If you’re feeling stagnated or in need of further direction in your career, it might be time to conduct a career audit.
In order to successfully assess your current career situation, you need to clearly define your goals and ambitions. Take stock of reality and figure out what it’s going to take to get you there. The following outlines the core questions you need to ask yourself when deciding on the next move of your career.
1. Do I like what I am doing?
It might sounds like an obvious question however it is often the most difficult to understand and answer. You need to ask yourself if the fulfilment you’re getting from your current role is enough to drive you to continue, or even move up. If you struggle to answer “yes” to this question, it might be time to move on and look elsewhere.
If you answer “no” to this question, you need to ascertain what it is you do like about your role, and find roles that involve these aspects or skills then make a move towards that. If there’s nothing identifiable about your role that you enjoy or find fulfilling, you need to figure out what is it you want to do, and make a plan to achieve those goals – and fast!
2. What are my strengths and weaknesses?
Self-assessment can be difficult, however it is also integral in determining your next career move. Knowing what you excel at and what you need to work on can be real motivators in career change. For example, if you know you need to improve your project management skills in order to reach the next level of your career or transition into a new role, this can be the motivation you need to actually enhance your existing skill set.
This is also a good opportunity for some self-praise. If you know your strengths, don’t shy away from them. Play to these strengths in order to position yourself in the job market, or take them to your boss as an asset for promotion should the opportunity arise.
3. How are my strengths valuable to an organisation?
Another difficult step in self-assessment – knowing your self-worth. There is always going to be other people in your organisation with the same experience and qualifications as you, if not more, so knowing your own value is critical to advancement. Consider why your skills are important to the business and build confidence around this.
Reflecting on your strengths and how they are used can be a great way to establish what other roles might be suitable for you in the future. This process can open up opportunities in other roles, organisations, or totally new career paths that you may not have otherwise considered.
4. Where do I want to end up?
It may seem like a “blue sky” type of question, but usually this is one of the least considered questions when people are moulding their careers. Do you have an ultimate goal of being a CEO? Or would you prefer a more hands-on, frontline role? Regardless of where you want to end up, even if it is not in your current profession, make a note of it. Write it down and place it somewhere visible, so it is a daily reminder for you to work towards.
5. How do I achieve my career goals?
This is the hard part – you’ve assessed your satisfaction in your current role, your skills, your strengths and weaknesses, you’ve even reflected on where you’d ultimately like to end up in your career. Now you have to create a plan, or a pathway, to actually making it happen.
Navigating from your current position to achieving your career goal can be difficult. Opportunities may not always pop up when you need them, however the key is to not get discouraged. Platforms such as LinkedIn are a great way to get an idea of how people in similar roles you’re striving for got there – and as a networking tool, it is invaluable.
It’s also wise to sit down with your current manager to discuss your career goals. Let them know where you want to be in two, five, or even 10 years time (if you can see that far ahead). If you’ve realised that your current role is not the fulfilment you’re after, discuss the possibilities of upskilling or diversifying your role to make it more engaging.
At the end of the day, your career is a really important piece of your life’s puzzle. It’s important that you do something you find fulfilling, and will be able to do long-term.
Is it time for a career change? Speak to SCU Online and open the door to a host of possibilities. Upskill, learn a new vocation or simply certify your existing experience so you can move up in your industry. Our range of postgraduate courses are available 100 per cent online for maximum flexibility. Call one of our dedicated enrolment advisors today on 1300 589 882.