Career goals refer to the clear and defined statements of objectives relating to the professional position you intend to achieve for the year. These career goals can either be within the same job you already hold, in another position you’re dreaming of applying to, or in a higher position you’re currently aiming for.

Provided that they’re realistic and actionable, career goals work as your driving force for each working day, especially when logging in to work is just a bit more stressful and challenging.

Not achieving one’s career goals can be disheartening. But when you’re finding it challenging even to see that sense of direction, it’s a significant achievement to make that first step of setting career goals.

Now that the first quarter of 2024 is in full swing, it’s about time to seriously think about those career goals you want to set and achieve. The suggestions below can help you out.

Train, Learn More, And Boost Your Skills


Learning never stops, even if you’ve been doing the same work-related functions for so long. The more that you learn, the more you’ll be able to improve. And climbing up the ladder to reach those goals would be smoother when you back yourself up with a lot of improvement.

If in the past year you couldn’t prioritize honing your skills and knowledge, put it at the core of your efforts this time. The good news is even those with a jampacked work schedule now have loads of opportunities to attend training and seminars and even to further their studies with online learning. Make the most of the learning opportunities available to you, as those can give you that much-needed boost to make achieving career goals more doable.

Along this line, if you’re in Australia, consider checking out programs like transition to work Banyule in Melbourne and nearby as they give you loads of web-based training opportunities and certifications.

Choose Your Job Wisely


Next to learning and educating yourself more for that boost of improvement, choosing your job wisely is by far one of the most critical steps to setting and achieving your career goals. Take time to sit down and think thoroughly about where you are in your job. If you’ve long been considering a career change, perhaps this is that last nudge you needed to convince yourself about giving it a go.

Choosing the right job does give you success. And by success that initially means you’re satisfied with how you’re able to do well in your career. Nonetheless, what the ‘right job’ means is entirely personal as it’s not always about the paycheck.

Suppose you’re in a job right now you don’t really want to do but have no choice but to do anyway. Chances are, you won’t even find it in yourself to set career goals for it simply because growth is out of the question.

Individuals spend most of their waking hours in their careers, so it’s just fitting to think it thoroughly and assess whether or not you are right now, career-wise is, where you see yourself at least at the end of this year.

Set A Deadline

Setting a deadline for your career goals makes it time-bound (one of the characteristics of well-made goals). Doing this is more specific than simply generalizing, ‘I’m going to be this as 2024 ends..’ If you set a specific date for that particular goal, you’re constantly targeting your subconscious to work hard every day to beat that deadline.

If your goal is larger, break it down into smaller sub-goals. Write those important dates down in your journal or computer calendar so you’re constantly reminded of them.

Make A Plan


Your goals have been set and you have a deadline for them. Now, what happens on those days between setting them and the deadline? Make a plan for what you should do and what old habits you can change to better ones to achieve your goals.

Take this time also as an evaluation of your habits. Have you been slacking lately, wasting weekends and free time mindlessly scrolling through your phone? Has that weekly drinking spree or night out with friends and colleagues suddenly turned into a twice or thrice-a-week thing? Set yourself up for minor changes to turn those bad habits around slowly but surely.

Start with something simple like ‘no drinking during the weekday’ and ‘no cellphones except when the kids are asleep.’ Try it and you could notice a shift in how your day works. This buys you more time, energy, and good health to focus on what you need to do to tick those career goals.

Identify The Possible Obstacles To Achieving Your Goals


No one ever said setting and achieving goals was a straightforward thing. There will be bumps along the way, and mind you, those bumps will be plentiful. What matters then isn’t about setting obstacle-free goals but rather more on committing yourself to success so that when those obstacles come, you don’t sink along with them.

For example, you’re losing so much time due to the traffic going to work and back home. Is it possible to shift to a new career that allows you to earn just as much and have the same (or even more) career fulfillment while working from home? That may be the solution to give you more time and energy to get the Master’s Degree finally you’ve long been wanting to do.

Start With Short-Term Goals First


Lastly, start by looking into your near future. Those short-term goals go a long way in setting you in the right direction to meet long-term goals. Ticking short-term goals could be that boost in mindset to consistently push you that you’ve put those out of the way and finished them, so there’s no stopping you now from achieving the long-term career goals.

Focus on the next three to five years. Then, you can move on to the next seven and ten years.

Final Thoughts

At the beginning and end of every year, there are words that seem to be thrown a lot quite frequently, one of which is ‘goals.’ The culmination of a year is a time to look back on the year that was and see if any of those previous career and development targets were ticked.

And as a new year begins, it marks new beginnings with fresh career goals this time. The year 2024 is already underway, yet it’s not too late to write down those goals. Make them personal, achievable, and realistic so that your checklist looks brighter now that you’re more able to tick each career goal at a time.