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Do You Have a Strategic Career Plan?

October 8, 2009

As managers and executives, we know the importance of a strategic plan for our organizations. But how many of us have a strategic plan for our careers?  I find many of my clients want to bypass this critical step in their career development.  If you don’t know where you want to go, you run the risk of ending up in a career path that does not work for you.

Strategy Formulation

The first step in the planning process is to define your vision and mission statements.
The vision is the image you have of the career you desire. 
The misson specifies how you will  pursue your vision.

If you want to run a small company, what kinds of experiences and skills do you need to meet that goal?

The next  step  is to define your values, and how those relate to how you develop your career.  What kinds of organizations  offer the culture that fits with your value system?

Strategy Development. 

The first step in strategy development is to conduct a SWOT analysis.  Evaluate your strengths and weakness, and the opportunites and threats that exist in the external evironnment.  Perhaps you do not have the right educational background, skills or experience.  What are the oportunties for the future, and what are the challenges  you face to beat the competition for these jobs?

Establish long-term objectives.  Where do you want to be in three-five years?  What strategies will you use to achieve those objectives.  Perhaps you will get an advanced degree or get a job where you will develop some new skills.

Strategy Implementation

Establish short  term objectives.  Perhaps you need to reveiw educational programs and companies  where you might be able to get the experience and develop the skills for a high level executive job. What is your action plan and how will you allocate your resources?

Strategy Evaluation

This is a dynamic proceess that requires continuous review and adjustments.  Changes in one process may necessiate changes in other areas.  You should review your plan periodiclly and make adjustments as necessary.

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