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Lead Why You Should Write a Business Plan for Your Career A successful career requires specific goals, determining your ideal path, identifying key challenges and opportunities, and coming up with contingency plans.
You can accomplish all these with a business plan for your career. Getty Images In the entrepreneurial world, a business plan is a sacred text.
Start out with a mission statement What is "success" in your mind? The mission statement of your career business plan will explain exactly what success is to you, and a general idea of how you plan to get there the smaller details can wait until later sections.
For this section, limit yourself to two or three sentences. You want to be as concise as possible without eliminating any of your overall vision. Your long-term goals are ones that will take a year or more to accomplish, and might only serve in a general context, like "get promoted" or "move to a bigger firm.
List your current and desired skills and credentials Chances are, most of your long-term goals will require you to have specific skills, which you might already have or you might not. For example, if one of your goals is to get promoted to a supervisory position, you might need to develop skills in a related peripheral department before you can make the move, such as a lead developer learning more about other programming languages.
This section of your career business plan will help you figure out exactly what you need, have, and need to get to reach your short-term and long-term goals. In a way, this functions as a separate goal list that caters specifically to your skills and credentials.
Similarly, you can return to it and cross things off as you learn or develop them. Describe your operational approach One of the most important sections of a traditional business plan is the "operations" detail, where entrepreneurs discuss the ins and outs of how they will manage their business, including who they will hire, when they will hire, what roles will need to exist, and what policies, processes, and procedures will be instated.
Your career "operations" section will be far less detailed and less strict, but it will still need to outline how you intend to operate. Will you focus on teamwork or prioritize individual efforts?
These choices will depend on your ultimate vision. Note your key challenges and opportunities In businesses, challenges come from competition and weaknesses in the model, and opportunities come from circumstances that can be taken advantage of.
In your career, challenges will come from difficulties at the firm, competition from other individuals, and changing landscapes of your industry. Opportunities will come from position openings, economic changes, and new clients. Take the time to speculate about possible challenges and opportunities--not only as they exist for you today, but how they might exist for you over the course of the next several years.
Identify potential problems and contingency plans Some of your challenges might evolve into full-fledged problems; for example, you might get laid off or suddenly find yourself unable to work. These scenarios will pop up no matter how much you try to avoid them or ignore them.
Writing out a full-fledged business plan for your career will take some time, but for most people, the investment is worth it. The key is to have a reasonable backbone to help guide and support your progress.
Aug 27, More from Inc.Career Planning is an essential component of a well-rounded education — that's why Eastern Florida State College offers the college-wide Career Planning & Development Center.
The Cox School faculty: Your connection to the Dallas business hub. At SMU Cox, your classroom is on the same energy circuit as Dallas's Global hub. Cox teachers are real-world experts who advise business leaders — and they'll connect you. The SBA connects entrepreneurs with lenders and funding to help them plan, start and grow their business.
We support America's small businesses. The SBA connects entrepreneurs with lenders and funding to help them plan, start and grow their business. What is Entrepreneurship and Business Development? An entrepreneur is a person who creates small businesses.
Entrepreneurs are calculated risk-takersthey strive to maximize potential of their venture while simultaneously minimizing risk. Cuyahoga Valley Career Center prepares youth and adults to enter, compete, advance, and lead in an ever changing world of work, college, and careers.
The Career Plan is your roadmap to success!
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