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5 Steps to Create Your Professional Development Plan



Professional development is essential for career progression and making impactful changes to your life. Therefore, a development plan is one of the best tools to keep on track and ensure that you do not get too comfortable in your starter job. Or alternatively, stay in a job that you dislike just because you do not feel like you have the potential for further development. Here are a few steps to create that plan and begin the process of making great changes to you career.


First, Discover What Your Current Strengths Are


It is important to note what your professional strengths are because it will enable you to set a timeline of what your next steps could be. For example, if you have the capabilities to be in a higher position than you currently are, you could start that process of either looking for a promotion or applying for the new job. However, if you think that you could build on your strengths you can consider whether you need more work experience or more qualifications and education.



Plan for Building Those Strengths


The next step in your development plan is to discover what additional skills you need to get to your ideal job role. For example, you may need to get a qualification by doing a course, take some training or volunteer with the community. It may be useful to plan what activities you will do and the dates they need to be completed so that you can make a fast progression.

Many people who work in the construction industry like to make active changes to achieve higher roles. An example is someone who has been a labourer for many years but wishes to become a supervisor or a manager. The process for them would be to take some courses such as site supervisory and the Site Management Safety Training Scheme to get a SMSTS card. They would also have to progress to get a CSCS card which would show their level of professionalism to be able to work on site.



Update Your CV or Resume


One important element of your development plan should be to update your CV with all the things you have learnt from your current role. You should add a skills section with all your competencies and ensure that you have the most important parts of your experience and education clear and easy to read. Your CV should really be a tool to sell yourself to employers.



Set Out Your Priorities


When you set out your development plan you need to have some key priorities in place. This may include things like not pushing your career development so far that you get too stressed, not accepting a job that would mean working nights, and making sure that you review your progress in a role every year.

These priorities could be on anything that you need to remind yourself during your career development process and they can ensure that you stay in the right direction.

Create Your Action Plan



One of the most important parts of your plan is to write down what you will be actioning right now. If you do not create an action plan of your next steps you may just end up not doing it. That means that you need to put timescales in place so that you can meet your goals. However, do not make these unrealistic or you may start feeling overwhelmed.