Using a list of goals is a useful way to take control of your career and your own development whilst identifying missed opportunities and points of strengths and weaknesses.

How to plan career goals for the future?

We’ve compiled some steps below to highlight some useful ways to set your goals.

Are you happy in your current role?

This is probably one of the first and most important factors to take into consideration, realising this can help lay the foundations for your forward plans.

If you are content, is there anything more you want from your current role or employer? Are there advancements or salary rises you want for yourself? If you are unsure, it is worth considering whether your job motivates you. Whether you feel engaged in your work? And whether you receive the benefits and salary that is a fair reflection of your position and contribution?

Have you set goals previously? Or are there things you want to achieve?

It’s worthwhile setting goals that are attainable, that way if they are unrealistic and you don’t meet them, you won’t be so hard on yourself! Researching attainable goals as part of your career plan is a great way to encourage yourself to achieve them. If you are happy in your current role it could be worth setting these goals with your manager and relate them to the company career plans and targets.

Have you researched your salary?

Researching your salary and aligning it with your own capabilities is useful in understanding your salary benchmark. Knowing what is available in terms of both salary and a benefits package within your industry can help you either negotiate for a higher relative salary in your current work or search for a new position that is able to offer the appropriate rate within the industry. It can be useful to build a strong case and work on your negotiation skills if this is a road you wish to pursue.

There are other factors to consider, that can help you visualise in more depth what you want to gain in the year coming.

Are you being efficient at work?

Consider whether, throughout the year, you have been working as efficiently as you could be? Did you manage deadlines or complete projects on time? Is your time spent productively, both at work and at home? Maintaining a work-life balance that suits you, is as important a career goal as the ones that are based on your job.

Reflecting and recognising this can help shape your goals for the future and recognise areas where you are perhaps not being as productive as you want to be.

Are you achieving a good work-life balance?

If you don’t have a good work-life balance currently, then it can be a good indicator that it is time to adjust your career aspirations. Do you have time to put your salary towards what you want in life?

Write down the answers to the questions above and visualise what you want from the year ahead and start to plan how to put them into fruition.

We think one of the key points for your plans is whether you love your role?

Nobody likes their job every single day, but it should generally be an overall positive experience and if it isn’t, maybe it is time to consider why and apply this to your goals for your next role!