It is important to have a path laid out for your career, from the time that you graduate. These goals are stepping stones that will help you build a successful career that you enjoy. Your first job may not be your dream job, but it should be a step to help you achieve it. The best jobs require you to have priori experience, so even though you are starting at entry level, you should not be discouraged.
First, you need to decide what your dream position will give you. This is your long-term goal. You may want to work up to a manger or director position or to become a vice president. You may decide that you want to open your own business and go out on your own. It is important to have a clear result in mind. This will make planning out the process you need to take so much easier.
The second thing you need to is determine what steps you need to take to reach your career goals. For example, if you want to move up into a position as manager, you may need to get an MBA. If you want to open your own business, you will need to gain experience in the business whether it is retail or service oriented, and then you will need to find capital to open the business. Seeing these specific steps can help you map out a career plan.
After you graduate you may find that you do not enjoy working in the career field you chose. Sometimes your major may not have been the right fit for you career wise. It may not be as enjoyable as you want or leave you time for the things that are the most important. If this is the case you may want to completely change fields. One of the easiest ways to do this is go back and get a degree in a different field but it is not the most cost effective way. You may be able to just take classes to get extra certifications or the specific things you need in order to qualify for another job. You may also apply for an internship in the field before you transfer over to it, to make sure that you are choosing the right field for you.
Most people work for several different companies throughout their working years. Whether you advance through the same company or you advance by taking positions at different companies, you need to make sure you keep your retirement in mind. This means that you continue to contribute to your retirement through your 401(k) plans or IRAs if you do not currently qualify for a 401(k). You have the option to roll your old 401(k) into an IRA at an investment firm. You should follow the same diversification strategy as you did with your 401(k).
When you switch jobs your benefits will change, and it is important to stay on top of your health insurance and life insurance. It is best to have your life insurance independent of where you work, so that you will have continuous coverage, no matter what your current employment situation is. If you are going to open your own business, part of your business plan should include providing health insurance and saving for retirement. No matter what direction your career takes you need to make sure that you are planning for your future as well. As you take on more financial responsibility, you will need to be better prepared to handle the financial emergencies. This means you should build your emergency fund at the same time you are pursuing the other skills you need to complete your career path. Careful planning will make it much easier to reach your career goals.