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Why Labour Day is the perfect time to set career goals

G. Shrivastava

May 1, 2023

On this day that celebrates the social and economic achievements of workers around the world, let's pause to consider how your own work fits into this larger picture, reflect on your career and consider setting new goals for the future. One of the most important things we can do to contribute to the growth of the economy, is focusing on our own professional growth and success by setting clear and achievable career goals.

Importance of setting career goals:

🎯 Direction and purpose:
When you have a clear target in mind, it's easier to make decisions about what steps to take next. You’ll be able to focus your efforts on the things that matter most, and avoid getting sidetracked by distractions that won’t help you reach your ultimate objective.
🎯 Motivation and passion for your work:
When you know what you're working towards, it's easier to see the value in what you're doing, and to stay committed to your tasks even when the going gets tough. This can be especially important during times of uncertainty or change, when it's easy to feel discouraged or disengaged.
🎯 Measuring your progress and success:
By breaking down your larger goals into smaller milestones, you can track your progress over time and see how far you've come. Celebrating these smaller victories along the way can help boost your confidence and keep you motivated to keep going.

Setting career goals

Before you set your career goals, take a few minutes to reflect on some key questions about your career:
💫 What contributions do you want to make to society through your job?
💫 How do you feel about your current role?
💫 Are you happy with your career choices so far, or do you feel like you’re not living up to your potential?

Once you’ve taken some time to reflect on these questions, it’s time to set some new goals for the future. Start by identifying your long-term career aspirations, and then break them down into smaller, more achievable milestones. Consider using the SMART technique, a goal-setting framework that has been used for decades in business, education, and personal development, popularised by George T. Doran, in 1989 in an article titled "There's a S.M.A.R.T. way to write management's goals and objectives." The acronym stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound.

🎯 Specific:
A goal should be clear and well-defined. Rather than setting a vague goal like "improve my career skills," a specific goal would be "improve my public speaking skills by taking a course and practicing at least twice a week."
🎯 Measurable:
A goal should be quantifiable so that progress can be tracked. For example, a measurable goal could be "increase my sales by 10% over the next quarter."
🎯 Achievable:
A goal should be realistic and attainable. Setting a goal that is too lofty or impossible to achieve can be discouraging. It's important to set goals that challenge you, but are also within reach.
🎯 Relevant:
A goal should be relevant to your overall objectives and values. It should be aligned with your long-term career aspirations and fit within the context of your job and industry.
🎯 Time-bound:
A goal should have a specific time-frame for completion. Setting a deadline helps to create a sense of urgency and accountability. For example, "complete the online certification program within six months" is a time-bound goal.

Don't forget to take some time to evaluate your progress towards your existing goals, if you have any. Are you on track to meet your targets, or do you need to make some adjustments to your approach? If you’ve fallen behind, don’t be discouraged – use this as an opportunity to recommit to your goals and make a plan for getting back on track.

Adaptiv can help you keep track of your goals with a tailor-made recipe to help you achieve success in your career by identifying your current skills, and recommending customized upskilling journey with micro-learning modules.