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Managing your career goes beyond applying for new jobs and thinking about next steps. The key to building a successful career is charting your career path. By doing this, you can define where you want to go and take active steps to get there.

One of the best ways to make sure your career path is on track is by discussing your career goals with your boss. The key is to not wait until you’ve settled in a position, or for your boss to bring it up. It’s your responsibility to be proactive with your career, both in the interview and your one-year review.

Goal discussions in the interview process

The time to discuss goals during the interview process is during the later stages, after an employer knows you’re capable of performing in the position. Starting too early can leave you seeming presumptuous because the company is still learning about you as a candidate.

Begin by framing the conversation around your understanding of what the company requires of you to both meet and exceed expectations. After this is clear, lead the conversation into your own career goals to see if they fit with this role and the company.

This can be a difficult moment to navigate because you can come on too strong, or you can come across as tentative and indecisive.  You can tailor your answer to the position, but make sure to be honest or you will set both yourself and the employer up for disappointment down the line.   A good company will tell you honestly whether it’s a good match, and if they extend the offer, you can decide if it’s where you’d like to go or if it is more prudent to wait.

Evaluating your performance after one year and beyond

Once you’ve secured the position, it is time to focus on delivering the work you’ve been hired to do. Spend your first year working hard and proving your worth, showing your employer what you have to offer. Make a positive impact to help ensure a great review, which will open up the space to discuss growth opportunities.

Use your review to highlight your key accomplishments and discuss the areas where you believe you have room for growth.  Ask your boss for input to see how they believe you can grow in the company based on what you’ve accomplished. Make sure to think through any ideas you plan to present before the review to make sure they are feasible.

Continue working hard

Keep finding new ways to improve and show your company what you can do for them. Use time outside of work to pursue growth opportunities in areas that add value to your professional skill set. Take classes, attend trainings and conferences to keep moving toward your goals.

Gainor Staffing can help you reach your goals

We are highly effective at facilitating mutually beneficial connections between our candidates and employers because we pay attention to our candidates’ skills and career goals. Don’t leave your career path to chance – trust Gainor Staffing to get you to your next step.