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For this assignment you will explore the requirements for your potential career path, assess your current skill set, and identify what action steps you can take to make your career goals more attainable. Take these steps to prepare your assignment.

· Read the  Career Planning Step-by-Step (Links to an external site.) article to better understand the importance of developing a clear career plan. Click here to access the  Career Planning Step-by-Step  pdf version.

· Review the  Roadmap to Success (Links to an external site.): an interactive tool to help you gather information which you may wish to include in your career plan. 

· Identify your long-term goals. Where would you like to be one to five years from now? What is the industry and role you would like to pursue for your career?

· Explore the skills and qualifications related to this type of role. What qualifications do you already possess? What new skills, knowledge, certifications, or trainings might you need to be successful? Identify the additional action steps you will need to take to be even more qualified for the position you would like to pursue. Be sure to set reasonable deadlines for these action steps.

· Reflect on your resources. What barriers do you need to overcome to be successful? Are there individuals in your personal or professional network who can help you?

Step 1: Self-Assessment

· What do you do well?

· What energizes you?

· If you knew you could not fail, what would you do?

· What high school subjects did you do well in?

· What issues do family and friends come to you for help?

· What do you receive praise for at work or home?

· What are some of your greatest accomplishments?

· What is something you do where you lose track of time when you are doing it?

If you would like to take an online self-assessment to learn more about yourself, you may take TypeFocus. Click  here  for instructions on registering with TypeFocus. 

Step 2: Career Exploration

Explore job industries by conducting research on the type of careers that use your interests and skillset.  O*Net OnLine (Links to an external site.), the  Occupational Outlook Handbook (Links to an external site.), and  Bureau of Labor Statistics (Links to an external site.) are great web resources for career exploration, job analysis, and education requirements.  

Ask a professional in your career field of interest for an informational interview. Informational interviews allow you to gather information from a direct contact about his or her role. There are various ways to pursue an informational interview. For example, company websites, social networking sites, newspaper ads, and professional associations are avenues a job seeker can take. 

Also, while deciding on a goal, consider your current lifestyle and where you would like to be in the future. Some helpful questions to consider are listed below. 

· Does the career you want pay a salary that meets your needs?

· Will it offer you opportunities to advance?  

· Are you comfortable sitting at a desk all day, or do you prefer to travel? 

· Is the career you are considering likely to exist when you are ready for a job?

Step 3: Determining your non-negotiable items

Although we may not speak them aloud, we each have things we are not willing to compromise on. During this step, write out your “must haves” for your future career. 

To help get you started, think about the minimum salary you need to have, where you want to live, and desired work hours. 

Step 4: Pulling it all together – Write the first draft of your goal

Now that you have conducted a self-assessment, explored industries and occupations, and written down your non-negotiable items, what are your future career goals? In the space below, write your career goal. Be as specific as possible. 

Example Career Goal 

I would like to become a project manager within a large organization (5000+ employees) utilizing my organizational skills, education in organization development, my ability to strategically plan, and my detail-oriented nature. Since I have a family, I must have a salary of $50,000 or more, work within 25 miles of Houston, Texas, and work a 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. traditional work schedule. 

What is your goal?  

Write your specific goal below.   

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