You’ve put a lot of effort into a résumé, an elevator pitch, company research and traditional networking, but you’re still coming up short in your job search or career progression. You’re understandably disappointed, but here’s the good news: it probably isn’t the tools you’ve created, but the lack of a detailed job search plan or map that is inhibiting your success.
You wouldn’t dream of starting a motor trip without a roadmap. The same holds true for a job search or managing your career. A career map will help you no matter what level or stage you’re at in your work life. Corporate professionals, recent college grads, entrepreneurs, the unemployed, military veterans, and those who have taken time off to raise children all benefit from creating their own career maps.
Career mapping not only draws on your strengths but also provides key insights to help you crack the code on how to be successful – on your own terms. Here’s how:
- Career mapping draws on your strengths and provides key insights. By plotting elements of your historical and aspirational work, whether in jobs or in school, you find more clues to what your true competencies, attributes and passions are – now.
- Career mapping addresses all levels of jobseekers from entry level and mid-level to executive and encore levels, and what I call the detour route. No matter what your level, moving ahead involves asking the right questions. You will have the context for inquiry that examines both the right and wrong questions.
- When career mapping, know there are no shortcuts. Before you can write a good résumé or give a good elevator pitch, you need to have identified your core characteristics. Only you can design a guide that will point you to a life filled with meaning and purpose.
Michelangelo wrote: “The greatest danger for most of us is not that we aim too high and we miss it, but we aim too low and reach it.” A career map will help you aim high. My career map template is available as a free download. Give it a try.
About the Author
Ginny Clarke is a career management expert. Her unique career mapping process is a result of years of experience as a partner at the global executive search firm Spencer Stuart, where she co-founded and led the diversity practice. As an expert in talent and career management, executive coaching, and diversity in the workplace, Ginny integrated her executive recruiter experience with her own unique approach to managing her career to write a book called Career Mapping: Charting Your Course in the New World of Work.