Exercises For Spotting Potential Career Paths


Exercises For Spotting Potential Career Paths

These five effective exercises for spotting potential career paths can help you quickly figure out your future in business...

When it comes to our careers, many of us find ourselves feeling lost. We don’t know what we want to do with our lives, and we’re not sure how to figure it out. If this sounds like you, don’t worry – you’re not alone. The good news is that there are a few exercises you can do to help you figure out your career path. In this blog post, we will discuss five effective exercises for spotting potential career paths!

The problem with figuring out your career

Most people find it hard to even know where to begin when it comes to their career. It can feel like an overwhelming task, especially if you don’t have any direction or clarity. The first step is to understand that your career is not something that you figure out once and then never think about again. It’s something that you should be thinking about and working on throughout your life.

Just like anything else, your career will evolve over time. What you want to do today might not be what you want to do in five years. That’s okay! The important thing is that you’re always moving forward and making progress towards your goals.

5 Effective Exercises For Spotting Potential Career Paths

Your situation is unique

Another challenge with career development is that everyone’s journey is unique. There are no cookie-cutter solutions or one-size-fits-all advice. What works for your friend might not work for you, and that’s okay! The most important thing is to find what works best for you and your situation.

You also need to be willing to experiment and try new things. It’s okay to change your mind, and it’s okay to make mistakes. The only way to figure out what you want is to get out there and start exploring.

With that said, let’s take a look at five exercises you can do to help you figure out your career path. These exercises are designed to guide you in your own journey of discovery, research and experimentation so that you identify a few potential paths.

1 – Create your “missing” wish list

Think about the big things that are missing from your current job or career. What do you wish you could have? This exercise is about figuring out what you really want, so don’t hold back!

Some things to consider include:

– More money
– More hands on work
– More vacation days
– More flexible hours
– More challenging work
– A better work/life balance
The ability to work from home
– Opportunities for professional development
– A company culture that aligns with your values
– More purpose driven work

Try to be as thorough as possible – it’s often easier to spot what you don’t have than it is to think up what you might prefer.

2 – Stack rank them

Once you have your list, it’s then time to prioritise. What are the things that are most important to you? Do any of them stand out straight away as being key to feeling happier with work?

Again, there is no right or wrong answer here – it’s entirely up to you. Just go with your gut and stack rank the items on your wish list in order of importance.

Another consideration to help here is to think about which items are non-negotiable, nice to have, or some you could happily compromise on. Think through each item using these three different lenses to help you finalise your order of importance.

5 Effective Exercises For Spotting Potential Career Paths

3 – Define the opposite

So now you have a handful of key things that are missing from your current job that you need. It’s time to describe what a job would look like if you did have those things. Doing this will help to crystallise your thoughts and give you a better idea of what you’re looking for.

For each item on your stack ranked list, take some time to write down exactly what that would look like in a job.

For example, if you want more money, how much more money? If you want more vacation days, how many more? If you want a better work/life balance, what does that look like?

The more specific you can be here, the better. You are essentially creating your non-negotiable “filters” for your new job search that you will need at a bare minimum.

4 – Brainstorm lots of crazy ideas

Now that you have your non-negotiable filters, you need something to filter through them! This is where brainstorming comes in.

The goal here is to come up with as many ideas as possible, no matter how crazy they might seem at first. The more ideas you have, the better your chances of finding something that matches your criteria.

The key is to keep your mind open and think outside the box. If you’re feeling stuck, try talking to friends or family, doing some online research, or even just people watching to give you some inspiration.

Some ideas to get you started include:

Starting your own business
– Becoming a consultant
– Going back to school
– Working for a non-profit
– Changing industries
Taking on freelance work
– Pursuing a side hustle

When brainstorming there are also different tiers of ideas you could use to keep adding to your list.

First, try to think of small incremental changes. What would an “easier” sideways move look like? Are there any other roles in your current company you could move into? Could you do the same job but at a different company where your in-industry experience is relevant and easily understood by contemporaries?

Second, consider slightly larger changes that could be stepping stones to something new. Perhaps there’s a different role you could move into that would use some of the skills you have now but also challenge you to learn new ones.

And finally, don’t forget the big, crazy possibilities as well! These are the ideas that might seem impossible at first but could be worth exploring further. They could end up being just what you’re looking for.

5 – Make a plan

Now that you’ve done all the hard work of brainstorming and coming up with ideas, it’s time to start putting your plan into action.

The first step is to research your top ideas in more detail using your filters. This might involve doing some online research, talking to people who are already doing something similar, or even shadowing someone for a day.

The goal is to get a better understanding of what the job would entail on a day-to-day basis and whether or not it’s something you could see yourself doing long term.

You should also use this research phase to start identifying any potential roadblocks that might stand in your way. For example, if you’re considering starting your own business, what are the key things you would need to do to make that happen? Are there any legalities or financial considerations you need to be aware of?

Once you’ve done your research, it’s time to start taking actionable steps towards making your new career a reality. This might involve updating your resume, applying for jobs, networking, or taking classes to gain new skills.

The most important thing is to get started and keep moving forward. The more you do, the closer you’ll be to finding the perfect career for you.

These exercises should help give you a better idea of what you want and how to get there. The key is to stay open-minded and keep exploring until you find something that feels right. With a little effort, you’re sure to find the perfect career for you.

Author Bio:

Naomi is the founder of Tribe And Seek and an EMCC and CIPD accredited career and performance coach. She has coached people from a variety of backgrounds and industries, from graduates to senior executives, advising them on career change.

Naomi was also the first in-house learning and development lead at the HR consultancy Lane4 (the leading L&D consultancy in the UK). She worked alongside olympic athletes to support clients like Kraft Heinz and TUI to develop their senior leaders. She also designed training at the Duke Of Edinburgh’s Award for both young and adult leaders.

No stranger to change, Naomi left a previous career in international development consulting behind and also fully overcame an accident that broke her neck.