The Road Ahead: Planning Your Career Path

January is the perfect month to take time to evaluate your job and career, and to decide where you are going and how/when you are going to get there! Going with our January newsletter’s theme of positivity, this can be a really positive exercise to focus your mind on all of your fantastic achievements so far, and to set exciting future goals and plans for development.


More crucially, with the uncertain job market and inevitable change that many organisations are experiencing, having an end goal will help you to strategically plot your career and ensure that you are not blown off course.

  • If you haven’t already done this, start to keep a record of your achievements as these are your selling points for your CV, future applications and interviews. Also, reflect on how you have you grown professionally, and are there still opportunities for you to continue to develop and be challenged in your current role?
  • Consider, are you still contributing effectively to your role, your team, your employer?


The 1000 day rule – in this instance, we’re reflecting on the trajectory of your development in your current job:

  • The first year should be about building relationships, learning the new job, developing within the role and building momentum – during this phase you are at your peak of enthusiasm.
  • Year 2 is about becoming an expert in your role, positioning yourself as the ‘go-to’ person, achieving objectives and achieving your peak performance.
  • Year 3 is split into 2 parts. In the first 6 months you are flying in your role, at peak performance. But, by the final 6 months, you can do the job, your excitement level drops? You are coasting now (or you soon will be) – it’s time to think about moving on!  Either within your current employer if possible, or externally.
  • We have all proved during that the last year that we can adapt brilliantly to change. Don’t be afraid to continue to change, and recognise too that the organisation you are in is likely to have changed – it may have gone through organisational restructure or strategic change – beyond your control.
  • Make sure you keep informed about the job market and sector, opportunities for growth for instance due to the current climate, and perhaps where opportunities might be shrinking (this is also crucial). Keep an eye out for our next article, which will outline key things to look out for in the charity sector this year!
  • Set Career and Job Goals and have a plan – perhaps for the next year, 3 years and 5 years and be prepared to review and adjust those goals as your career plans progress or change.
  • Also think about your CV from the employer point of view – your career plan has to make sense because one day, you are going to find yourself facing an interview panel and explaining your decisions!
  • Think about and take advice on how to get from A-B – be aware that not every job is the dream job, but it can be a stepping-stone to the dream job. Sometimes a sideways step now can drive forward momentum later.  Be realistic and flexible and keep your mind open to opportunities.
  • Continued learning and development – take advantage of any education/training opportunities to develop you personally and professionally, and to enhance your future career. Think about working with a mentor.
  • Keep as many options open as possible (think of an upside down pyramid) for as long as possible – if you specialise in one niche too soon, you may find doors closed to you as you progress.




If you would like to advise us regarding a change in your circumstances, or send us your up-to-date CV for our files, please get in touch at and we would be delighted to arrange a catch up call.  If you would like to stay updated about our current vacancies and other, exciting updates regarding the charity and not for profit sector, register with us here.