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Workforce Wednesday: How to Choose Your Career

“Where do you see yourself in 10 years?”

Do you hear that question a lot? It’s a simple question people in the professional world like to ask.... but sometimes it’s not so simple to answer. Having a goal for where you want to be ten years from now usually requires a plan to get there. The first step? Choosing your career. Here are four steps to help.

1. Get to know yourself

Start by doing a quick assessment of who you are. That includes your hobbies, interests, and skills. What are some things you really enjoy doing? What are you really good at? Consider making a list.

2. Explore your options

Do a little research about which jobs seem to match the list of skills and interests you made in step one. Compare average wages, projected growth in the different industries, and educational requirements. Job shadowing people in some of these fields can be a good tool as well.

3. Clarify your values and prioritize your needs

What are you really looking for in a career? If the 9-5 style doesn’t suit you, maybe flexible hours are important. Or perhaps a certain pay range with benefits is high on the list. Either way, identify the pieces that are non-negotiable to you. And understand that you may have to make trade-offs.

4. Plan your action and begin acting on your plan

Commit to one career-building activity per week. This could be growing your professional network, increasing skills, or learning more about your chosen industry. Set daily goals and track your progress.

So - the next time someone asks “where do you see yourself in ten years” just pull out your plan you made using these steps and you’ll be better able to answer the question. Click here for more info and tips for job seekers.

*Every Wednesday, Workforce Services takes a special look at issues or initiatives that affect Utah's workforce. Hop on Twitter to follow the latest innovations that help Utahns take their careers to the next level: #WorkforceWednesday