How to Strategically Plan a Career

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    • 1). Identify all of your short and long term goals. Include financial goals as well as life goals, like having a family and being able to live in a certain city or country. Place definite timelines on these goals (for instance, move to California within five years). This step is important because when deciding what type of career to pursue you need to make sure it will fit in with your desired lifestyle.

    • 2). List your talents and skills. If you've graduated from school with a specialized degree this is a starting point. Even if you didn't go to a school and receive a degree, list the tasks and skills you have that could allow you to earn money in a career. This could lead you to taking the training courses you need to pursue that career. For instance, if you love working on cars this strategic planning session could lead you to enroll in a vocational school.

    • 3). Determine the career field, or multiple fields, in which you are interested (like engineer, lawyer or writer) based on your talents, skills, passion and education. Once you have you know what type of job you want, you can investigate the various industries that employ people in those jobs. For instance, some engineers work in the science industry while others work for toy manufacturers.

    • 4). Research the future of the industries that you want to enter to ensure that the outlook is promising. You can find this information on the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) website. Search for your career choice and click "Job Outlook." Consider this information when deciding if this is a long-term career that you can count on having in the future.

    • 5). Build up your resume based on the career and industry that you want to pursue. Take additional training, attend industry events, network, and join industry associations if possible. Gain an advanced knowledge of the field before you start applying for positions.

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