Set career and job goals

Develop a roadmap for your job and career success. Can you be successful in your career without setting goals? Of course. Can you be even more successful through goal-setting? Most research says yes.

A major component of career planning is setting short-term (in the coming year) and long-term (beyond a year) career and job goals. Once you initiate this process, another component of career planning becomes reviewing and adjusting those goals as your career plans progress or change – and developing new goals once you accomplish your previous goals.

As you develop goals to make sure they meet these criteria.

  • Your goals must be specific. You might say, "I want to be successful." Well, who doesn't? But can you define what success means to you?
  • You must be able to measure the outcome of your goals. When you set a goal, include a time frame for achieving it.
  • Don't be negative. Make sure your goal is something you want rather than something you want to avoid.
  • Keep your goals realistic. Make sure your goals are compatible with your abilities and skills.
  • Is your goal reachable within your time frame? If you have one big goal, break it down into several short-term goals.
  • Tie an action to each goal. For instance, if your goal is to become a writer, sign up for a writing class.
  • Be flexible about your goals. If you encounter barriers that threaten to impede your progress, don't give up. Instead, modify your goals.  Put your energy into pursuing other objectives.

For more career research resources, visit or contact Career Services at or (313) 577-3390 to schedule an appointment with a Career Planning Counselor.

References and resources…/career-planning-tips