Career planning. What’s your reaction to those words ? Many people experience a negative reaction, regarding it as time consuming or stressful, with tasks or decisions to be put off for as long as possible. For others it suggests opportunity, excitement and development, something they’re keen to spend time on.
So, where are you currently in terms of your own career planning? Some of you will already be working to a defined plan, but might welcome advice about the steps in between. Some of you may be putting it off as long as possible and hoping it will somehow work out. Others might be aware that they need to do something about it, but be unsure of what and when.
We have found that career planning and development is most effectively completed gradually over time, as a ‘slow-burn’ effort, rather than in a rush as deadlines loom at the end of your PhD. It’s also less stressful this way. Another added benefit of sustained career planning is that you can adapt and rethink your plans when circumstances change .
To support and encourage you in planning your next career steps, and setting short and long term goals and actions for yourself, Careers and Placements and RETT have created an interactive PGR Career Journey that will help you to make the most of your time with us, whatever stage you are at.
During your PhD you will have a range of opportunities to develop your research and professional skills, but it can sometimes be difficult to work out what’s available, when you could/should do it, and whether it’s right for you. The PGR Career Journey aims to support you from the point when you start your PhD, through to the later stages of career decision making and applications.
A range of actions, opportunities, resources and reflection points is included, with a suggested timeline linked to your PhD progression. It’s focused around 3 key themes:
- Researching your career options
- Academic and professional development
- Applications and recruitment.
So why not, as a first career planning action, take a look at the PGR Careers Journey? It’s interactive, simply click on the links to be taken to the relevant web pages. You might then wish to follow up by joining Professional Development and Employability courses in the RETT programme or by booking an individual careers appointment with Janice Simpson, the Careers Consultant for postgraduates.