“I am a student of ACCA. Can you please guide me whether I should first get experience in audit firm before joining FMCG sector or I should directly apply for internship in a reputable FMCG company?
p.s. my aim is to join FMCG company”
That was an inbox I received this morning. This young lad is entering the career market and is a bit confused. Certainly career development is a challenge for many. Generally, people land into jobs or businesses without considering the potential for future growth. Having spoken to a large number of young people, I can say that over 90% entrants in to career market follow someone they are inspired with or just follow the market trends. They do not work hard enough to identify the right opportunities based on their strengths and passion.
In my view, there are four key steps to career development. Following these simple steps can lead to a successful career path.
Understanding your skills and qualifications
There are many alternatives in the job market. For example, if someone has done biomedical engineering, he can opt to start his career as a sales person specializing in biomedical equipment sales. He will excel, because of one reason, his ability to understand biomedical equipment.
It is essential to gauge your skills and qualifications with a broader focus, considering options beyond imagination of other people competing with you in the career market.
Prepare a Hit-List
I am yet to find a job seeker with a clear vision about his or her target company (or companies). If you do not know where potential career opportunities are for you, forget a swift start!
As soon as you are ready to start looking for jobs, prepare a list of companies you wish to target. It should be a large list. Get website addresses, emails etc, you would need those in the next stage!
Deal with Deficiencies
I know a gentleman in his early 40’s, an old fashioned chap complaining about not progressing in his career. The reason was so simple, he was not computer literate – I told him to join a training school and learn Microsoft Office, this is a must now – two years down the line, he still complains but did not learn Microsoft! I feel not many would agree to look deeper in to their deficiencies. Those who prepare well and start dealing with these deficiencies effectively are more successful in career. So if your English needs improvement or your accounting is weak, you should work and improve.
Develop Clear Vision
I posted a question on my facebook in early January 2013 asking “What is your Career Development Plan in 2013” – Sharing some responses:
MPhil, Stepping in, Learning everything, Time Management, Self Development, Improving Focus, Looking for job, Improve consistency and confidence
Are these focused responses? No I guess, everyone can understand that most of these responses are not clear. If you do not have a clear vision, you will never succeed – Period!
About the author
Passionate Trainer, Blogger and social media strategist - Qualified from US Chamber of Commerce’s Institute for Organization Management, I have been engaged in Private Sector Development for over 22 years. Love reading, traveling, mentoring. Professionally, I am working as Deputy Country Director at Center for International Private Enterprise (Pakistan Office) - My blogposts cover topics related to Entrepreneurship, Management, Career and Social Media. You can join me at Google+ or Facebook.
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