The purpose of career development
Career development is unique to each individual. More and more the nature of work is such that you will have a number of career changes or transitions in your lifetime. Sometimes these transitions will be planned and sometimes they may not—due to personal circumstances, lifestyle choices, organisational change, and other factors.
Regardless of the reason for the change or transition, some common themes emerge in relation to career development:
- Employability is the key to success in this changing world of work.
- Employability and career development must be driven by the individual.
- Employability is the capacity of individuals to possess the skills, knowledge and attitudes to engage and re-engage in various forms of employment.
- Lifelong learning across the lifespan in formal and informal ways is crucial to employability and produces a flexible and adaptable workforce.
- Career choice and development is broader than just an occupation or a job, but is influenced by all facets of your life including personal lifestyle, circumstances, interests and values.
- Career resilience is a core survival skill of the future working environment. Resilience, described as ‘the capacity to adapt to a changing situation while maintaining and nurturing one’s core self’1 will clearly be enhanced if individuals position themselves as lifelong learners.
Your career, today and in the future is likely to involve:
- A range of different jobs.
- A range of interests and skills.
- Working for a number of organisations.
- Experience in more than one industry.
- Different types of work arrangements through the course of one’s life including full-time, part-time, contract, self-employed etc.
- Organisational changes which will affect your role in an organisation.
To build a career, you’ll need to:
- Take responsibility for your own direction and growth.
- Know who you are and what your goals are, in terms of way of life and job satisfaction, as well as wealth and success.
- Train yourself to master new sets of skills, so that you have more choices in a climate of change.
- Be able to view changes in work or in life circumstances, as opportunities for growth and development and not as a threat.
- Learn to see and understand the changing patterns in the working world, so that you can anticipate future trends and adjust accordingly.
1. Miller, J.V. (1996), A career counseling collage shaping the next century: Professional issues shaping career development, p402.