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Commentary: Career planning is a lifelong endeavour. To start, you need to understand these 4 things

For fresh grads as well as those seeking a mid-career switch, effective career planning provides you with a structured and strategic approach to reinvent yourself.

In today’s digital age, technology plays a vital role in career planning, with complimentary resources and tools that are available just a click away. Approach technology with a blend of curiosity and critical thinking — these tools are not definitive answers but rather starting points for reflection.

For example, the CareersFinder feature on Workforce Singapore’s MyCareersFuture portal can suggest suitable job matches and upskilling recommendations based on individuals’ profiles, while considering their career aspirations.

Workipedia by MyCareersFuture provides a one-stop destination for career-related information including expert insights on job searching and career development; and the Career GRIT resource portal provides a structured job search guide and recommends content such as job opportunities and workshops tailored to each individual’s unique profile.

Once you have identified your VIPS, the next step is to develop an effective career plan by:

Setting goals: Define your short-term and long-term career aspirations based on your latest VIPS. This provides a clear sense of direction and gives you something to work towards, making it easier to stay focused and committed.Exploring options: Research various industries and professions, both within and beyond your current company, for informed decision-making. This allows you to glean insights on the latest job market trends, and identify where your skills and qualifications can be most effectively applied.Developing your skill and knowledge: Identify skills required for your chosen path and work on acquiring them through formal education, online courses, certifications, or on-the-job learning. Continuous skills development keeps you competitive in the job market and ensures that you stay relevant and valuable to prospective employers.Creating an action plan: Develop a detailed plan with manageable tasks, deadlines, and networking steps. This ensures that you remain on track knowing what needs to be done.Adapting and being flexible: Be prepared to adjust your strategy when things don’t go as planned. This allows you to navigate unexpected challenges and setbacks without losing sight of your long-term goals. Staying flexible also allows you to pivot when new opportunities or trends arise.

A PERPETUAL ENDEAVOUR

Your career is not just a job; it is a journey. Career planning is not a one-time event; it is a lifelong endeavour.

It is never too late to start planning for your career. This is an investment in your future success — whether you are at the beginning of your professional life, contemplating a mid-career change, or seeking to reignite your passion in your current role.

Your career is a canvas waiting for your unique masterpiece. Start planning now, and paint the picture of the professional life you desire. Your future is yours to shape, one proactive step at a time.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Indira Ramasundran is a Principal Career Coach at Workforce Singapore (WSG). Individuals who require personalised support in career planning can sign up for WSG’s new career guidance programme “Polaris”.

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