The words five-year career plan alone fill me with dread. I had to create a five-point plan just to put together my work outfits the night before so I wouldn’t know where to start with a plan that covers 1825 days. It doesn’t help that Stalin is the OG of five-year plans, so my memories of higher level IB history conjure fears of unrealistic objectives and widespread famine. The former is a genuine concern, the latter less so.
Turns out I’m not alone, 63% of our Instagram followers don’t have a career plan because they don’t know how to do one. So I did some research the millennial way and turned to Google to compile some parameters for creating a five-year plan:
What’s the bigger picture?
21st-century sensibilities place a huge emphasis on career but there’s more to life than work. I work because I like what I do but also to get paaaaaaiiiidd! I need money for food and shelter but I want money to decorate said shelter, to eat out with friends and go on bae-cations to Caribbean islands. My point is, career is a key element of your adult life but it is not the total sum of your adult life. Use your overall life goals to shape your five-year career
Five years is a bit of a stint so lil baby goals are essential. Plus, some of our main goals might be a bit abstract or too large to tackle at once. By breaking it down into small achievements you’re more likely to stay on track. I am particularly keen on this pointer as it offers plenty of opportunity for celebrations: “Ooh, I completed my monthly goal of arriving 15 minutes early to work each day, yay me!” Rewards self with a cheeky buy from ASOS and an Aperol Spritz.
Timetable some education
Listen to podcasts, read, learn a new skill. These things will keep your mind fresh. Opening doors to new conversations and opportunities that will inform your life plans. Career based learning to expand your is also great. Scrolling DM TV & Showbiz doesn’t count.
Review and Re-Evaluate
Says it all really. Check in with yourself. See how you’re doing with these goals. Struggling with something – change it. Doing really well with another – take it to the next stage. Learned something new that alters your desires; amend your five-year career plan and milestones accordingly.
Be the like the ‘G’ in Gucci
I’ve lost count of the number of memes I’ve seen telling me to “show people your dreams rather than tell them”. Maybe it’s to starve the silent haters stalking my every move on the gram. Or to generate expectations that I can’t live up to. Either way, I’m not completely sold. I’m not encouraging you to share your deepest ambitions on your Rinsta but friends and family make great cheerleaders. Choose a couple of close confidants and share your goals with them. Being accountable will give you that extra push to get shit done. Not all gangstas move in silence like the ‘g’ in lasagna.
TOP TIP: If you don’t think you know what you want for your life in five-years consider the version of yourself that owns your dream aspirational item. I’m currently obsessing over the Fendi Kan I. It’s wholly beautiful and also completely out of my budget, but in my head, it’s a life-changing purchase. The version of me that owns this bag is living my best life and really informs me what my key goals are. I’ve got this fantasy-cum-premonition fleshed out down to the gym classes I will take. It’s a failsafe technique, truss mi daddy.
That’s all folks; the foundations for a five-year career plan – not communist.
I’m eager to put these pointers to the test so as well as writing my own one (eventually) I want to collaborate with you on your five-year career plan. Slide into our DMs or comment below if you voted in the poll or just read this article and want to take part.
Words by Akilah Cohen