Most career-oriented individuals make the best plans and schemes for them to be successful in the profession or career path they have chosen. But at times, these best plans unexpectedly turn on a different course making you rethink and review what went wrong. In such cases, when you think that theres nothing you can do about your downfall, will you take a risk and hand over your careers fate to chance?
To a few innovation experts, traditional career planning or the one that they call linear career planning is no longer viable or feasible. Linear career plans are those plans wherein individuals say Ill graduate two years from now, work at Company ABC for 3-4 years, get a Masters degree in Business Administration and Management, re-join that company and become a partner. Linear career planning almost always assumes that the labour market will continually comply with your goals and ambitions.
To Paul B. Brown and Charlie Kiefer, this kind of planning for a career is counterproductive and is potentially dangerous. Traditional career planning in a world where things are not predictable can possibly lead to nowhere. Anyone who does such will just be wasting their precious time.
Because mostly everything is highly uncertain, plotting your every move and planning every detail of your career to make it successful is no longer advisable. So what are you supposed to do?
Experts suggest that having an emergent plan is a lot better. This means that you create a plan and make a set of certain consistent actions that are not initially intended or anticipated at the beginning or at the initial planning phase. A consultant and career coach, Victor Cheng, explains this type of planning further and he said that when you do emergent planning, you dare to take your best speculation or assumption at what you consider is the right and most excellent strategic approach, and then you deliberately try it and see what comes next.
This type of career planning is something that lets you view every phase or stage of your career as some sort of a mini experiment. Typically, opportunities to success will just emerge in the course of your job experiments. With this kind of career planning strategy, you will not be tied down on those concrete plans and necessary and mandatory stages that you assume as the way to a pre-determined ambition or destination.
But if emergent planning is not your kind of thing and you are doubtful about it, then here are a few tips from Harvard professors and experts that you can take to help you figure out if its a better career planning strategy or not.
- Consider the things that are important to you and how those translate to a career or profession. – You need to think and ask yourself what are the things that matters to you, and how can these affect your future career. You might pose these questions to yourself, Do I want to work in a certain company, or do I desire to manage a team? The answers to these questions will help you direct your steps productively.
- Experiment with your job and dare to try things out. – You might think your present job is not suitable for the career you have in mind. Well, you might want to think again. In emergent planning, you need to experiment and dare to try things out. Perhaps there are things you have learned in your present work that can be useful to the career you are dreaming, or maybe, the responsibilities you have can be valuable and beneficial. Try them out and see what happens.
- Never lose a contact detail or information. – According to Len Schlesinger, in emergent career strategy, you will never know who you might need to contact or give a call, so never lose a contact number and any other important information. Your contact booklet can be an indispensable and needed resource.
Working strategically to acquire success in your profession or career is essential. But at times you over strategize and over plan resulting to unproductivity. So, why not try to hand over your careers fate to chance? Who knows, it might be the only thing you need to do.