With the festive break ahead, now’s an excellent time to take half an hour to reflect on your career highs and lows of the year just gone and turn your attention to what’s ahead. Goals play a pivotal part in shaping a rewarding career.

Here we explore why goals are necessary, offer some career goal suggestions and explain how to set your own. Walk through the steps and you’ll soon be on the path to 2024 career success.

The power of career goals

The research stats are varied, but they all point out the same thing: those with goals are more likely to achieve their desired outcomes. Goals serve as the compass guiding your professional path, providing direction, purpose, and a roadmap for success. They transform vague ambitions into actionable steps, fostering motivation and a sense of accomplishment.

Setting clear goals in your career journey helps you stay focused on reaching your destination.

At F1rst Commercial Recruitment, we believe that a well-defined set of goals is the cornerstone of career success. Whether you’re in office, finance, or sales roles, having a plan in place can set the stage for remarkable achievements.

How to set your own career goals

No two people will have exactly the same set of goals because for goals to be effective, they need to be highly unique to the individual at their particular point in time.

The best way to set career goals is to first think long term. Ask yourself a broad question, such as; what role do I want to be in 10 years from now? Within these overarching goals, you’ll find that smaller goals for the year ahead will likely fall into specific categories.

And don’t worry – as your aspirations flex over time, so will your goals. But having goals will ensure you’ve got the scope to adapt as your career path unfolds.

Ideas for career goals in 2024

Your professional development

Investing in your skills and knowledge is always a good goal to think about. Identify areas for growth and development within your current role or desired career path. This could involve acquiring new qualifications or completing courses. A great tip is to look at next level jobs on your career path and see what skills you lack and set about acquiring these as part of your professional development goals.

Your experience development

Training courses and qualifications count for a lot but what really stands out to employers is your work in action. Again, look at next level job descriptions and consider where you fall short. Then set goals to intentionally gain that experience. This might be as simple as saying “yes” to a project that will give you the ability to illustrate a skill on your CV or at interview.

Your soft skill development

Many career stumbling blocks come down to those harder to quantify skills which are difficult to teach. Be honest with yourself and consider which soft skills need improvement. Then consider how to do this. For example, if you need to improve your collaboration skills, seek out collaborative opportunities, or if you could be more effective dealing with conflict then seek the support of a mentor to help.

Your next career steps

Knowing when to move on to a new role is a vital part of goal setting. Defining the next step at the right time is very difficult. This is where excellent recruitment agencies make the difference. We can help you see whether your aspirations are in line with the wider industry, or whether you’re out of step or underselling yourself, or indeed help you define what the next role to aim for might be.

Staying put

Of course, you might be happy doing what you are doing, and not be considering next steps or personal development.  That’s good too, let’s face it, half the battle is to find a job that doesn’t make you groan at the thought of going into work each day! Staying put doesn’t have to mean staying still. Your goals could reflect around adding value to what you do and helping others do the same. Simple goals like this are a great way to enhance your happiness at work in 2024.

At F1rst Commercial Recruitment, we encourage those in secretarial or admin, accounts or finance, and sales or customer service roles to envision their aspirations clearly. Then work backwards and create some goals for the year ahead because purposeful planning results in intentional and successful careers.

We’re here to help you achieve your career goals in 2024 and beyond. Get in touch on 0161 359 3111.