Regardless of whether you're just beginning career, considering your options mid-career, or starting to plan for retirement, you should have a career management plan.
Generally, there are 4 ways you can move in your career.
Up — gradually assuming greater responsibility in your particular area of expertise. This usually involves eventually moving up the management chain.
Down — either relinquishing some level of management responsibility and returning to work in your particular area of expertise, or assuming a lower level role in a completely new area.
Laterally — using your current knowledge, skills and experience in a new area. People sometimes do this to broaden their knowledge, skills and experience as a way to prepare them for a leadership/executive role, or sometimes simply to introduce variety to their career or explore other related career avenues.
Circuitously — a combination of upward, downward and lateral moves.
However you want to move, careful planning and preparation can help prepare for and achieve your career goals.
While traditionally many thought it was their manager's or their organization's responsibility to manage their careers, in today's workplace, every employee needs to take charge of their own career development/progression – though hopefully with support from their employer.
This process and template will help you prepare a comprehensive career management plan to help you achieve your next career goal.
Career management plan template
Identify your career goal, then create a plan to prepare yourself to achieve that goal.